April is observed as ‘National Poetry Month’ in America since the 1990s as a way to appreciate poetry and build more awareness for the medium in the U.S. But that doesn’t mean the rest of the world cannot celebrate it too. And it also happened to be “Indie April”, so I decided to start the month with a poetry book by an Independent author. Two birds in one shot.

So book number 31 for the year 2021 and number 1 for April is – ‘Rising’ by Yong Takahashi. It’s a collection of 42 poems that explore themes of heartbreak, identity, family and self-worth. While the first two poems read more like short-stories, due to the free-verse style, things get more poetic from the one titled “Denial”. Some of the poems dealing with heartbreak are quite visceral, each line echoing pain; relatable to anyone who has suffered in love.

The majority of poems in the collection are almost Quatern-long (16 lines), while there are much shorter ones peppered in between, the kinds we call “insta-poetry”. So there is an interesting balance of both long and short pieces.

If you are looking to read new poetry, give “Rising” a shot.

Listen to Episode 17 of Abstract AF the podcast on YouTube.

Four poets recite their poems in this one (embedded below)