St. Trigger by Aaron Coleman is one of those books you look and think it will be easy. After all, the publisher review says it only has 52 pages.
After reading the first few poems I stopped and went back and re-read them. Started in early-late December, I finished on January 1, 2019.
I have no idea what I read.
Is there beautiful language and images? Oh boy yes! “A dozen monarch butterflies strewn like candy wrappers in the seaweed.” This was one of many images that jumped off the page.
Is there abstractness? Yes. Is there a lot about being black in America in 2016? Yes. Is there sex? Yes. There is love, lost, hate, and so much more, too. Coleman sets them up and knocks them (and you) out of the park. He makes a world come alive.
The poem On Forgiveness is one of my favorites due to the clarity Coleman writes about (I am assuming) their father (or perhaps it was a more general father image). Either way, it is a beautifully sad look at one man and how he is seen through the eyes of his adult child.
There is some abstractness (as mentioned) to the language and some of the poems are oddly formatted. This does make reading some of the poems difficult. The subject matter, while accessible is not an easy one.
This is not a book for the casual poetry reader. Even if you are experienced of a reader, this is not a book that can be easily read. It will take time, possible multiple re-readings as well.
(Review One: 2019)