“Poems Mostly of the Sea” by Jenne Kaivo

Jenne Kaivo
Independently Published (2019)
ISBN 9781687078186
Reviewed By Susan Violante for Reader Views (10/19)

I picked up “Poems Mostly of the Sea” by Jenne Kaivo because the cover intrigued me. The title spoke of the sea, but the imagery reflected something different. It wasn’t until I read the introduction that I realized the extent of the author’s profound message. I was glad I did because it made me understand the ‘sea’ reference in the title and understand how the poems related with each other throughout the book. At first glance the book seems an eclectic collection of poems. 

However, this collection’s eclecticism is not based on the topics within, it is based on the different styles of poetry the author uses to convey the broad message of the collection. The collection begins with ‘Prayer to Darkness,’ ‘Anglerfish,’ and other works which refer directly to the sea and its creatures. My favorite of these was ‘By the Sea it’s Safe and Quiet.’ Then the author moves to more profound topics with works like ‘When I Will Tell Children, ‘The Sickness of the Spirit,’ (one of my favorites), ‘Grazing Dinosaurs,’ and ‘For Shame’ among others. Towards the end I found more favorites like: ‘Unnatural,’ ‘The Innocent Says,’ and ‘The Life I thought I Had.’

What all of the above have in common, is the profound messages that can be absorbed from them – how different they are in style, yet how they inspired the same feelings in me as I read each one of them, and finally, how they reflect the author’s amazing flair, being able to portray her voice in so many different styles and topics, bringing this collection into a cohesive circle of life on planet Earth through time, and the physical and spiritual realms.

Jenne Kaivo’s voice reflects depth in thought and topic, playfulness in how she plays with vocabulary, rhyme and structure in so many different formats, and relatability as all readers from any time and culture will feel a connection as creatures of planet Earth. Below is a short favorite of mine which I hope it will show a little sample of what I mean:

The sky’s collapsing
from the weight
of all the light
it holds! The birds
are sweet
and sticky.
A twitter and moan
and the locusts
are gone
There is steam
on the ground and
nothing is fun

“Poems Mostly of the Sea” by Jenne Kaivo is definitely a Five-Star must-read collection for all readers who enjoy thought provoking and reflection inspiring works. I believe this book should be revisited from time to time to discover and surprise ourselves as we find new messages and meanings as we grow. Jenne Kaivo is an author to follow.

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