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This is a Fictional Friday post, where I review a book (but it might not always be fiction)

I did warn you that some Fictional Friday posts may not be about fiction. However, quick question: is Rapture fiction or non-fiction?

Duffy takes real-life emotions, about a relationship, and sets them as poems, that can be read as a book.

I leave that question until you read Rapture, which is something you should definitely do.

The truth is, not many people like reading poetry. It brings out the worst in writers: a pretentiousness not there in novels surfaces, and they either sound childish, if they rhyme, or pseudo-intellectual, if they don’t.

Of course, there are some exceptions. T. S. Eliot‘s poetry, however hard it may be to find a meaning from, is some of the most beautiful writing I’ve ever heard of.

W. B. Yeats manages to pack some of his (but not all, don’t read Easter 1916, he just tries to prove he has had high connections with newly dead people) with emotion, passion; real human feelings. And they don’t really rhyme, because he was Irish.

Thomas Hardy‘s novels might be incredibly dull (I’m now allowed to say this, having read something along these lines in Virginia Woolf‘s Selected Diaries last night.), but his poetry was simply beautiful to read.

However, the majority of poetry is a struggle to read.

Not Rapture.

Cover of "Rapture"

Rapture by Carol Ann Duffy

Firstly, everyone will be able to identify with at least one poem in Rapture.

It’s the story of a whole relationship – from the first, tentative flirting texts to the deep, inescapable passion, to the arguments and the shouting, to the breaking up and drifting apart. Along the way she deviates from the relationship and talks about death and teapots.

If you have ever fancied someone, or argued with someone, or broken up with someone, or been so deeply in love you feel you might drown in it, you will find something to identify with in Rapture.

Secondly, it’s written like a novel. It has a beginning, a middle and an end. It had plot and intrigue. And you will read it like it’s a novel: from beginning to end; you won’t want to put it down.

Lastly, it’s beautiful. It’s real and it’s passionate and it’s beautifully written and you will be able to feel true emotions permeating through the pages you’re holding.

“Falling in love is glamorous hell”.

“Away from you, I hold hands with the air”.

“The air hurt and purpled like a bruise”.

“I found the words in the back of a drawer, wrapped in black cloth”.

“I want to call you thou, the sound of the shape of the start of a kiss – like this, thou”.

Read it in your head and relive long forgotten emotions.

Read it aloud and feel your tongue dancing against your teeth and the roof of your mouth.

Read and reread it.

If you’re only planning on reading 1 book of poems for the rest of your life, read Rapture.

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