Black Aperture

Black Aperture (Walt Whitman Award) - Matt Rasmussen

There are a lot of great reviews for this book already, for good reason. The unifying theme that runs through this collection is the suicide of Rasmussen's brother, and as such it is both a compelling and an emotional read. I was continually reminded of absences within my own life, even if the circumstances didn't always mirror the experiences of the poet. This book is a dark elegy, filled with verses ranging from volatile all the way to whispered quiet. The bulk of the poems consist of short lines grouped into unrhymed couplets, and the language is sparse and stark. There is a lot of white space here. But within that white space there are pops of surprising imagery and epiphany. I highly recommend this book, especially to those who have had losses of their own and wish to explore the many feelings that can accompany absence.