Micah Ling’s Three Islands

27 Apr

I’ve tried 4 times now to knock out a review of Micah Ling’s debut poetry collection Three Islands, and each time I tried the “classic review” style–synopsis, strengths, weaknesses, conclusion, etc., and each time it rang false and clattery. I can talk voice and speaker and mood and meaning, but I do that best over beers not blogs.

In short, Ling wrote a book I don’t want to mess with. It’s tough and brave and tired and longing, like each character it seeks to explore: Amelia Earhart, Fletcher Christian, and Robert Stroud (the Birdman of Alcatraz). They are a voice that drags you in, sequesters you or shipwrecks you. Frankly, I’m afraid it might reach off the page and punch me drunk. I’m afraid they will drive me to the same sort of crazy (I am not crazy!) that drove them to their islands.

I am made to be no island. No one is, and Ling’s manages throughout this book to dig into what becomes of someone forced to live as one.

2 Responses to “Micah Ling’s Three Islands”

  1. Amber Sparks April 28, 2011 at 7:39 pm #

    This sounds awesome. I’ll have to check it out.

    • ce. April 28, 2011 at 7:50 pm #

      You should! It’s a really great read. I guess I should’ve mentioned in the review that I’ve chosen it to have on the table, too. I guess I can go back in and include that. Ha.

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