- ASIN: B097NNFL11
- Publisher: Legacy Book Press LLC (20 Jun. 2021)
- Language: English
- Print length: 101 pages
- Page numbers source ISBN: 1734798688
- Genre: Poems About Depression And Pain
The BookViral Review: Tremendously powerful narrative poems on the subject of Depression and Pain. Rarely have I encountered poetry as ‘present’ as that of Mari-Carmen Marin’s ‘Swimming, not Drowning’.
Through exploration of both her own and other’s experiences, Marin captures how depression is indiscriminate and indifferent to whether your life is perfect or imperfect, and furthermore does not apologise to whoever it haunts.
With her candid and open verse, she tackles big issues surrounding mental health, not shying away from obviously traumatic areas of her life. However, neither does she create an air of self-pity or self-indulgence, but rather an honest representation and immediacy of emotion, forcing the reader to live each word with her, thus creating a bridge between her own experiences and another’s.
Nevertheless, in the poem entitled ‘Weird’, readers find themselves feeling desperately sorry for the narrator, in part due to this devastatingly compelling piece describing the anguish of difference in youth, and the message that to others difference means flawed. Conversely, in ‘Weird part 2’, Marin implicitly chastises our assumptions, as she gently changes our perspective by reframing the word, with reference to the most wonderful, beautiful, and unique people in history who have been regarded as weird.
Excellent command of diction and syntax makes every word count, distilling her words into a heady mix of powerful imagery and metaphor, but tempered with a delicate delivery. With her words sometimes subtle, and at other times deafening, Marin cannot fail to elicit a strong emotional reaction in the reader.
Marin has also carefully considered and expertly applied visual representation in her poetry, enhancing meaning, such as with ‘In need of a magic pill’ where the character’s perception of life is falling away as surely as the words, which visually threaten to slip from the page. Whilst lengthier storytelling verse is interspersed with shorter poignant lyrical reflections, which leave room for personal meditation.
Paired with stunning artwork, Swimming Not Drowning creates an outstanding book and is unreservedly recommended. If you struggle or have ever struggled with the dark moments of depression, or indeed seek to gain an understanding of another’s struggles, then this book is for you.