Book review: the sunflower project by unLYSHed

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Rating: 5 out of 5.

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Pub date May 8, 2020

ISBN 978-0578686912

Price $16.49 (USD) Paperback

Using graceful, intricate drawings and first-person narrative voice poems, unLYSHed debuts with a compelling collection of poetry that explores life, love, loss, relationship woes, trauma, abuse, self-love, and self-discovery. Divided into four parts: sowing, withering, budding, unLYSHing, the book covers various phases of life from beginning of new life to experiencing and facing life with all its beauty and ugliness (“love/ like you are stretching your petals/ exposing your center/ and feeding the sunlight tingling in your skin/ for the very first time”). UnLYSHed experiments repeatedly with inversions as the protagonist finds herself on the roller coaster ride of emotions such as love and loss, hope and grief, light and darkness, and beauty and ugliness (“there is no possible way to measure/ the number of times i/ i thanked God for you,” says the protagonist “he knew he had my heart secure/ he then made a play for my mind”). The sentiment—“The need to fall in love over again renews with every season/ do not shy away from the pursuit” is what makes the recovery more poignant in the last two parts—budding and unLYSHing—as it’s not naively hopeful, but rather a clear-eyed directive to hold open your arms and embrace life in all its complexity. Heartbreaking and hopeful at once, this poignant collection will stay with the reader long after they turn the last page. unLYSHed is an author to watch.


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