‘Words With Wings’ review

My latest poetry collection ‘Words With Wings’ has been reviewed in Caduceus Magazine (UK).

Words With Wings
by Emily Maguire
Reviewed by Dawn Gorman

Better known as a singer-songwriter than a poet, Emily Maguire, who has toured with legends Don McLean and Dr Hook, wrote this collection of short, stream-of-consciousness poems following her daily Tibetan Buddhism meditation practice. She says: ‘I’d write the first phrase that came into my mind. I had no idea what I was about to write, from one line to the next’. She reads the poems on a downloadable CD (free with the book), accompanied by piano music she also composed as a stream of consciousness – and both this, and her voice, are remarkably soothing.

Her work is influenced by her experience of mental health recovery – she has bipolar disorder – and there is much wisdom here to serve as balm for the fear that lives in us all. Sometimes, the comfort lies in simple acknowledgement that everyone fears something. In the opening poem, Clouds, she says: ‘We are all fire-eaters / And trapeze artists / Hoping there’s a /Safety net to catch / Our fall’. In Fear, meanwhile, she explores how anxieties can be channeled positively: ‘We create art to make / Lamps in the night’.

Maguire, who swapped life in the UK for a farm in the Australian bush, takes a cynical look at our tech-driven lives. In Enough, she says: ‘something / Sacred’ is missing from the draining world of emails and Twitter posts, adding: ‘we / Are in love / With our machines / Far more than / With each other’. But Nature offers solutions – in Wings, she watches crows and kookaburras in flight and suggests we, too, lift our eyes from the ground and exalt in life, concluding: ‘We just need / To find where / We put our wings’.

Maguire says she offers her ‘words with wings’ to ‘uplift, comfort and inspire’ – and they do.