on 26 December 2010
This collection of Felix Dennis's poems is one of the most attractive books I have had in my possession for a long time. As someone who loves trees, and anything written about trees and all tree art it was the perfect Christmas present. I have not read Dennis's poetry before, but the poems here are extremely accessible and stimulating, thus helping one to escape from the miseries of deepest Winter, this one as I write on Boxing Day 2010 being more miserable than most. The poems deal with a whole range of issues and periods of time within the world of woodlands. I couldn't find one uncomfortable metaphor within the verse, this being so rarely the case with my poetry reading. The illustrations by Bill Sanderson are beautiful and their style reminded me much of some of the more evocative artwork of those artistic heroes of my childhood, C F Tunnicliffe and S R Badmin. I was not so enthused by the few more fantastical pictures, but as child I would have undoubtedly adored those too, and the book in any case should appeal to a wide range of ages. A lot of work and thought has gone into the production of this book. Interestingly the notes contain a recommendation of Will Cohu's lavishly illustrated "Out of the Woods" book, this being one I have handled in bookshops and being in the "shall I or shan't I buy" category. On the strength of this I have placed said book on my wish list. I infer that Felix Dennis shares my love of first class accompanying artwork for books about the countryside, be they prose or poetry. I just wish more such books were illustrated with such solid beauty, and not with wishy-washy line drawings. The generously accompanying free CD of poem readings so far remains in cellophane but will I am sure brighten up a forthcoming rainy day or windy night.
This almost flew under my radar but having been attracted to it by a large advert in the Sunday Times (some times advertising does pay) I bought this with an open mind thinking that at this price there would be no great loss if it was rubbish. Which of course it isn't. It is rather quaint, perhaps twee in places but this can be forgiven given the heartfelt sentiments expressed in this poetry and even better, read out on the accompanying audio CD which brings the written word to life and is worth the purchase price alone. Coming at this not as a lover of poetry but a lover of nature, I think the balance is well catered for. By this I mean that I wouldn't necessarily know what "good" poetry was but I know what I want a poet to write about and the subject of trees is right up my street.
Felix Dennis poetry is special - accessible, fun, engaging, sometimes poignant, always a great read (or listen).
This version comes with a CD of Felix reading how work, and his voice adds real depth and vitality to these great poems.
Not into poetry reading? Neither was I until I went to one! But I am converted to Felix at least.
In this volume, Felix writes (and reads) about woodlands and country things. Some of his poems really invite thought, as his simple, gentle words lay on top of deeper and really fascinating ideas. A masterpiece of gentle poetry.