White Storm by Gary Metras

By Lynette G. Esposito
White Storm by Gary Metras, published by Presa Press, the reader is introduced to traditional form and images that walk, skip and run across the pages in common and uncommon images delighting in clarity and directness but holding a surprise insight that appears close to the end of each poem.
For example, the first poem entitled White Storm, the reader is surprised that although night is wheezing and the trees are pounding, it is a love poem  and a lament on lost youth and hope.
                             Old man night is unsettled
                             In his white haired sleep.
                             From my bed I hear him
                             wheezing in the trees, pounding
                             his fists on the brittle mountain.
The poem ends with
.                            …Where are the angels?
                            about to sing our praises and the praises
                            of light and grass and field solid under foot,
                            so we could rise from the bed:
                            and step into the simple day?
The word images demonstrate the precise language of winter and age and lost youth and it works well .
Robert Peters of The Connecticut Poetry Review says “Metras writes moving mediations on our lives and on his own.  His language is direct and unpretentious.   His music has a full and faultless sound…in every poem there is a surprising  insight,,,”  I found this so true.  On page 73,
The Melted Bell suggests so much.
                                Born in fire, the forged bell
                                Learned its pure song that rang
                                Sundays through slatted steeple
                                Down hill and across valley.
The poem has four stanzas with four lines each and each stanza details the power of the bell until it is melted and the sound can only be carried in the heart.  But still, although it can no longer ring, it is heard.
Metras celebrates women men love in his poem, Believing in Eyes ,on page 74 where he references the Beatles’ Lucy in the sky with diamonds to what men see in the eyes of  their beloved women. He mentions diamonds he sees in the eyes from wife to his daughter to his granddaughter in a way one can feel his joy .in knowing these girls.  He ends the poem with:
                                …So let us praise all the women
                                 who ever showed us that joy, that hope,
                                 which men by ourselves can’t know.
This poem clearly shows the complexity of the deep relationships between men an women.
I don’t have a favorite poem in this book.  I liked them all.  This is a good read.
You can find the book here: White Storm
Lynette G. Esposito has been an Adjunct Professor at Rowan University,  Burlington County and Camden County Colleges. She has taught creative writing and conducted workshops in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.  Mrs. Esposito holds a BA in English from the University of Illinois and an MA in Creative Writing and English Literature from Rutgers University.  Her articles have appeared in the national publication, Teaching for Success; regionally in South Jersey Magazine, SJ Magazine. Delaware Valley Magazine, and her essays have appeared in Reader’s Digest and The Philadelphia Inquirer. Her poetry has appeared in US1, SRN Review, The Fox Chase Review and other literary magazines. She has critiqued poetry for local and regional writer’s conferences and served as a panelist and speaker at local and national writer’s conferences.  She lives with her husband, Attilio, in Mount Laurel, NJ.

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