Lover (The Art of Staying Lost Series): ARC Review by Asha Seth

Author: Sakshi Narula | Genre: Poetry | Pages: 125

A poem is a ray of hope, a friend who is as messed up as you but knows you better than the rest of the world. From the author of the celebrated poetry collection, Loveish comes this two book poetry series, The Art Of Staying Lost. Lover, the first in the series features love poems and notes. Lost, the second book in the series features poetry and prose about healing and letting go. Hearts break everyday but once in a lifetime we all go through an earth shattering one. Loneliness can be an alchemist, this despair is also a gift. Your heart maybe irreparably broken right now but this suffering is not permanent. Exploring every aspect of healing after a heartbreak, the poetry in this collection implores you to heal and grieve at your own pace, until you don’t have to anymore.

Click on image to pre-book ‘Lover’

I am a lover of poems. And the first chance I got to get my hands on Sakshi Narula’s ‘Lover’, I would’ve traded it for a bunch of breaths. I’ve been following her on Twitter for quite some time and I was totally intrigued by the lovely cover and the teasing blurb. I got lucky! She was kind enough to share an ARC of her book which I’ve read thrice now. The book releases on 30th October, 2020. Lost is the second book in the series and will be released in January 2021.

And now, I am going to tell you what made me fall for this book so hard!

You are scattered like autumn in my backyard

‘Lover’ is Sakshi’s first book in the ‘The Art of Staying Lost’ series. This handy collection is 125 pages long in the kindle format and filled with beautiful illustrations all over. Sprinkled with micro-poems every alternate page, this collection gives the reader just the right amount of pause to absorb the message the actual poems attempt to deliver. You will finish reading it in less than an hour and then wonder about what the book did to you.

Read me like your favorite book, word for word
Sing me like your favorite song, beat for beat
Chant me like a prayer, bead for bead

A lot many poetry books I’ve read that have tried to tackle the delicate topic of healing, but it was only in this collection I felt that was smartly handled. Because as a reader you do not want to read preachy prose, nor do you want to lament. Sakshi has tenderly worded grief arising from heartbreaks and loss without painting them in regrets and/or mistakes. Her writing clearly stems from her heart and perhaps, the experiences are personal; which makes the book all the more relatable.

My mouth has mailed you post cards since the day you left

In my opinion, these are not really poems, these are beautiful letters written to self, in most pieces, to the heart, nudging it to look at the sun and smile. That’s the best thing I guess – learning to accept is a step toward healing already. In the choicest of words and crafting some mesmerising, graphic phrases, Miss Narula has proven she sincerely wishes for her readers to heal without hurting.

I miss you like a lonely house misses voice. A perfectly made bed longs for legs in knots and hands pinned on hands.

Her poems in ‘Lover’ have a very subtle hint of heartaches in the emotions captured, while marrying them with the hope to forgive and forget, and thus move on. That I felt was a very strong message that we need to remember. Poignant yet soothing, this book definitely leaves one wondering at how easy healing feels only if you allow yourself the time.

I will fold this sadness in words and pack it in an envelope, label it past, bury it in soil and call it a memory.

There are parts and pieces that have stayed with me, for they were so breathtaking that I had to write them down. And believe me, you’ll be doing the same because every word written in there is raw, relevant, real. Each one of us has had a heartbreak, at some or other point in life. And her words bring you home without feeling sad, but reminiscing about all the happy memories nonetheless.

All I have to say is this – if you are burning, hurting, from a troubled experience, memory, relationship, or loss, this book will work wonders in helping you shed some of that negativity, those apprehensions, the sourness, the shivers, and empower you to look the truth in the face and say, “You tried to break me, but I am stronger than you think.”

What? Are you still thinking? Pick it up right away.

Name your favorite poets or poems. Share your thoughts in comments below.

Happy reading till we meet next. Until then, carpe diem! 

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