This review is spoiler free.
“I am going to be the woman you fear. my true self.”
(Track Twenty-Five Remix)
Published: 2017, by Andrews McMeel Publishing.
Genre: Poetry, Nonfiction
Contains: Mental Health, Mental Illness, Death, Grief, Addiction, Blood/Gore, Depression
‘Stuff I’ve Been Feeling Lately’ is a poetry anthology that follows Alicia Cook’s lyrical message to addiction. Structured like a mix-tape, the anthology is split into two sections; ‘Side A: the Poems’ and ‘Side B: The Mix-Tapes’. The first is composed of ninety-two poems exploring death, trauma, recovery and love, all followed with a song that was playing at the time of writing. The second section has the first poems crossed out, odd words circled to create new poems in them.
I’ve been searching for a new poetry anthology for so long now, desperate to read more and fall in love with the form back in time for university to begin. Cook’s anthology was a brilliant place to start.
Throughout this collection, we are greeted with pages of empowering imagery of love and magic, placed beside heartbreaking emotion and misery. With them both side by side, Cook manages to move us through an emotional journey towards a hopeful ending. The journey towards recovery touched on all aspects of the human condition, remaining relatable yet informative for us. Although, the journey is known as difficult and occasionally unreachable, Cook’s poetry explores its difficulties and moving forward in an inspirational way to make it appear a little more achievable for those struggling.
However, my personal favourite thing about this anthology was the genius ‘Side B: The Remixes’. The idea of taking an already created poem and rewriting it with the words within the original is an incredible idea to me, made perfect with the title of the segment. The poems themselves sometimes lacked, some seeming to fit easier than others, however, with the way they were created it’s understandable to see why.
Some of my favourite poems:
- Track Twenty-Five
- Track Fifty-Nine
- Track Eighty-Two
- Track Four Remix
- Track Six Remix
- Track Sixty Remix
- Track Sixty-Three Remix
Overall, this poetry collection was a joy to read. I took it with me every-time I left my flat, addicted to reading a few whenever I had a few minutes free. I highly recommend this book to not only poetry lovers, but those who need a little magic sometimes.