February's Read: Without from Within

I have two brothers in my life. One's good; the other's bad. You get it. Anyway, Brother A is kind of an awesome musician. He can play any instrument that crosses his path. He has recorded his own CD's putting down every vocal and mixing together every tune, chord, and possible harmony. He can hear a song and throw it on the keyboard note-by-note. It's also his birthday. You know, just throwing that out there.

Brother B can't carry a tune with a bucket over his head. It's sad really, because he's always enjoyed music. He just can't sing. He just can't hear the beat.

We expect this from musicians, but it's no different with writers. There are some who can "hear" the words, and man, do I love a poet who can hear the beat. Let's talk about that.

This little gem is what I've been reading this month. "Without from Within" is a book of poetry by Ron Shaw.

I haven't read poetry in awhile. At least, not any that I hadn't written. When I was in college, though, I read it all the time. I was a huge fan of Yusef Komunyakaa and had the pleasure of attending one of his readings personally. If you know the guy, then you know what a killer poet he is. When I picked up Ron's book, I found myself reading poetry very similar to Komunyakaa's but a little closer to home.

The poems in this book are raw. They make you think and have meaning. They're representative of life and don't sugar coat crap. The words inside are rhythmic and cool as jazz but will make you bleed. At least he gives you snap shots of beautiful scenery to soften the blows. Poetry isn't everyone's cup of tea, but if you like it, then this is definitely a book you want to add to your list. After all, life in verse is a rare thing to find nowadays, and I'm not going to lie. This book is the perfect before-bed ritual. Poetry and thunderstorms are always a win.

I've enjoyed reading this and know you will, too. Be sure to check this guy out! He's not just a poet. Here's how you can connect with the author and get the book:

Read it.

Visit Ron's Website.

Listen to Ron on the Air.

Follow Ron Shaw on Twitter: @rongizmo

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