#bookreview Butterflies lost within the Crooked Moonlight. Matt Nagin @MNagin

  • Title:Butterflies lost within the Crooked Moonlight

Matt Nagin

  • Publisher: Burning Flower Press
  • Average Rating: 4.5/5🌟
  • Amazon
  • About the Author:

Matt Nagin is an author, educator, actor, filmmaker and standup comedian. He has been published in Writer’s Digest, The New York Post, Mic, The Humor Times, The Higgs-Weldon, Grain Magazine, Arsenic Lobster, The Charles Carter, Dash, Antigonish Review and many, many more. He also wrote and directed his first short film, “Inside Job,” which premiered at The Mediterranean Film Festival Cannes, where it won Best Short Film. More info at mattnagin.com

Nagin’s poetry takes a while and for some may prove not to be your thing. In the first few poems of this book we have a rather confusing one more refrain in Flirt, a run of poetry forms being nuked, suffocated, and shot in Poetry Assassin, and in Wondrous Admonition we are called to LISTEN and the end of the poem grinds to a bit of a halt.

It’s actually a lot of fun and I imagine Nagin had a lot of fun writing the poems. It’s free-verse, and experimental, and you are able to get the ideas behind the poems.

Immigrant Love Story is a lot more like it, ‘your face is my face and my future is your future and yet your face is kept behind a fence,’ followed by Outside Hotel Ganseroort, ‘every night platinum blondes in mini-skirts and halter tops,’

Many poets don’t write about poetry, but Nagin does, and in March of Syllables he writes about why poetry. NG Tube, At the Funeral, the titles here speak for themselves. At the Funeral plays with form. Wrong One  is a love poem, Turns towards Bethlehem, and then Forever 21 is brilliant, these lines,’since it almost seems we

Were never even 21 the

First time and we secretly 

Want to go back to that time,’

Night at the Waldorf, again you don’t know what you’re going to get, but this is another standout. Like Nightingales, another play with form. Poem Primer is a list of some of the worst things that can happen to us. Supplication, Heartbreak Unconventional, Thanksgiving, Election Day, again the titles speak for themselves. Poems Preparations, and Army of Charlatans are a another play with form.  Report Card, relatable I think for all receiving feedback from family and friends, ‘you should write something people actually want to read,’ Endless Blanket, writes the minute details of our lives, from Christmas gifts, through to the Milky Way.  Inspirational Chat, is the very opposite of that. Don’t Relinquish the Mantle, Tinseltown Hierarchy, Sick, Poems from the Head, Millennial Art, ‘a wolf pit of social media nothingness,’ Audition, Twelve years an Adjunct Professor, ‘where are the grateful pupils?’ Bombing at Sloan-Kettering is stand-up on a cancer ward, Lamentations, The Recovery Room is a lengthy poem, Cactus a simple poem draws outwards to illustrate the single object of a cactus, title poem, and the final three Strung out, Paradox, and The End of the Poem.

The reason I listed the poems in this collection is because each one is worthy of a mention, and some of the titles indicate where the title will take you, and the range of subjects too.

Matt Nagin in similar in style with Bruce Kilarski, in that in their poetry they both bring our lives, and the objects within them, to align with the out, and our vast universe.The poems on poetry had an impact too, and were like a touch base in between the other poems.

A slow start, but Butterflies lost within the Crooked Moonlight grew on me. It’s a distinctive style Matt Nagin has and his book deserves an applause. Poetry readers this is a must read.


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