Friday, 5 November 2010

Crush by Richard Siken

by Richard Siken

Summary: Tell me about the dream where we pull the bodies out of the lake and dress them in warm clothes again...

Richard Siken’s Crush, selected as the 2004 winner of the Yale Younger Poets prize, is a powerful collection of poems driven by obsession. Siken writes with ferocity, and his reader hurtles unstoppably with him. His poetry is confessional, gay, savage, and charged with violent eroticism.

I’m not really sure how to review this, it’s not usually the kind of book I would review and I don’t read poetry often but Crush is fantastic.

I haven’t read much poetry written in the kind of style that Richard Siken uses but I really like it, the way he strings words together is just beautiful and raw, a lot of his poems really got under my skin and stuck with me. Each one tells a story and not in the obscure kind of style that a lot of poets write in, it’s still poetic but more to the point and each one seemed to have a theme of panic or pain or obsession or everything about love/lust that hurts, which I loved.

This was the one that made me buy the book in the first place, because someone posted it on Tumblr and I just had to read more of Richard Siken’s writing:

"You’re in a car with a beautiful boy, and he won’t tell you that he loves you, but he loves you. And you feel like you’ve done something terrible, like robbed a liquor store, or swallowed pills, or shoveled yourself a grave in the dirt, and you’re tired. You’re in a car with a beautiful boy, and you’re trying not to tell him that you love him, and you’re trying to choke down the feeling, and you’re trembling, but he reaches over and he touches you, like a prayer for which no words exist, and you feel your heart taking root in your body, like you’ve discovered something you didn’t even have a name for." 

Another one that I loved, and it was really appropriate given the whole gay suicide/wear purple type thing that was all over the internet recently:

"The blond boy in the red trunks is holding your head underwater
because he is trying to kill you,
and you deserve it, you do, and you know this,
and you are ready to die in this swimming pool
because you wanted to touch his hands and lips and this means
your life is over anyway.
You're in eighth grade. You know these things.
You know how to ride a dirt bike, and you know how to do
long division,
and you know that a boy who likes boys is a dead boy, unless
he keeps his mouth shut, which is what you
didn't do,
because you are weak and hollow and it doesn't matter anymore." 

Basically, I really recommend the book, even if poetry isn’t really your kind of thing you might like this.


P.s. Sorry I’ve been kind of M.I.A recently, I’ve not been reading much and NaNoWriMo has been distracting me. I should have a review of Solid up soon though.

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