myth and poetry

MP Review:
Richard Lance Williams, secret book of God
Reviewed by: Connie L Williams
secret book of god
Dalton Publishing
ISBN: 0-9740703-4-3 $16.00


secret book of god

Approaching a first review of Ric William's first published book of poetry, The Secret Book of God, one is immediately impressed by the stark white linen-like texture of the cold bound volume. Opening the book the raised lower case letters of the title slide like braille under the finger tips: luxurious, sensorial, promising revelation of ancient cuneiform secrets. Continuing the theme of ancient text inside the cover is the palimpsest page, reminding us of a time when writing materials were precious and often used one or more times after earlier writing had been erased. One is now glad, that one has learned to read.

Certainly reading Williams's poems demands a fresh eye. It is necessary to read "differently," suspending not only preconceived definitions and expectations, but hanging suspended in negative capability realizing that the titles of the poems lie just as suspended at the ends of the lyric or sometimes narrative verse.

Williams is not only a master of phrase, sentence, and punctuation, but of the ampersand, creating a non de plume of "and" by substitution. He writes "every sadness every scar a flower with an open mouth" (walking off), this vivid description of life's difficult challenges, with the outcome beauty in a flower, assures us that pain assuages itself. Saving the title till last suspends expectation or foreshadowing, the advantage, the aha moment of realization.

Reading the lines "the architects of sleep design the world / lacing moments like foam at the edge of every now" (dreaming memory) dragging us back to hard pan lots where ten-year-olds in days gone by lie on their backs and see the face of God, dreaming her.

These poems are rebellious in line length, yet simultaneously and singularly void of traditional structure. Williams has successfully created original form in the fractured vessel of asbstract imagery, fleshed out, in concrete vision. One sees an almost digital composition, a staccato of wave lengths, of particle and field leading to the pallatable oral satisfaction of "the scent of oranges heavy; in your hair."

Tenacious insight exposes us for "what is shameful / is only what we refuse to love." He shocks our traditional senses with gentle reticense, almost whispering, "where in the void of god . . . " and turning insightful sensitive moments of words hewn from the clay of language into shape and form "perhaps we are to dreams what landscapes are to us."

Rick Williams helps us ask the questions we dare not utter, "what the meaning of existence had to do with existence," as we search our lives for "lost Arthurs," and realize that some days "a description of pain ad infinitum only crying will do / or a knife & a long hill / to plunge the blade / of all that can't be said."

Finally, Ric Williams has done just that, said all that can't be said.


Dalton Publishing

Connie Lane Williams & Forrest Fest

Forrest Fest 2007
mythopoetics mythopoesis
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