Book Review: Meditating On Soulful Meditation
By Abiodun Taiwo Felix
At the core of poetry are imaginative experience, emotional response, and purgation of emotions. These levels of poetic experience are often achieved through spontaneity and language use which reveals beauty and meaning. Every literary discourse represents certain realities reflective of the core values of society.
Within the context of literary discourse, therefore, Soulful Meditation finds its space. The collection of sixty poems delineates the entire gamut of human experience across physical, emotional, and psychological boundaries.
The poems collectively delve into the ‘trivial’, yet important issues that define humanity. The first poem, “A Beautiful Bird” suggests, literally, a creature that flies around. Yet within its symbolic layer lies the disconnection between the body and the soul akin to the reality of transition hours.
Following in the direction of “A Beautiful Bird” are “What the Soul is”, “A Curious Thing”, Inside My Head”, “When the Day Comes”, “Direction”, “The Heart”, and “A God within Us”, which are united in their use of metaphysical symbolism and imagery to foreground the relationship between the physical and the imaginary, the seen and the unseen, the real and the mundane.
“About Being”, is a definition of the essence of being itself which is “love that never ends” which humanity needs “to feel complete”. The poem, without exaggeration, speaks of the golden rule: the love of self and neighbour. “Stuck” and “Psyched” are even deeper in their exploration of the mind.
The depth of imagination invokes imagery of deep psychology and emotions that reveal everything yet say nothing. However, the nothingness we lack in “Stuck” and “Psyched” we gain in “Being Yourself” because,
There are many
Different things in
This Space that we call home
But only one thing matters:
In a nutshell, Taiwo has knit in one collection, a sum of who we are: mere mortals, who can look and not see, hear and not understand. That is why even when God “lives within us all”…it’s not always easy to see” (A God within Us”). Through a pictorial representation, Taiwo binds the physical to the imagined. Yet in doing so, we are left in awe since we still cannot define who we are as seen in the last poem of the collection, “Time Passes Slowly”,
You hold the promise of a rose
But it is not yet complete:
It has not bloomed;
It will take time to blossom,
Time passes slowly
Until it is ready
To be displayed in all its glory