Wednesday, January 19, 2011

THE ROMANTIC by Poncho Peligroso

This evening I decided to sit-down with Poncho Peligroso's foray into soon-to-be-published poetry, The Romantic.

Didn't quite know what to expect of this guy. I only recently became aware of his online presence and haven't really had the motivation to thoroughly check him out. I requested to read through his new poetry book, The Romantic, so I could properly get a feel for what he was all about, and also (self-interestedly) see how a peer is going about 'getting his shit out there.' He kindly and quickly forwarded it to me. This, I admire.

Poncho subjected me (as the reader) to an onslaught of his innermost thoughts, desires, and experiences. If you read this blog, you are probably aware I haven't cried in an unfortunately inordinate amount of time, but some of these poems pulled on me, in completely unexpected manners. It is a beautiful feeling to read someone else's thoughts and completely identify with them or to feel yourself being moved in a way that you had not expected. Ah! This is why writing is such a grand thing, and conversely, reading another human's writing is the greatest insight into their mind and experiences. We all identify personally with different aspects of people's writing, depending on our experiences, but it is generally accepted that any empathetic human can relate to another's plight if they are willing (which, one could argue, requires radical open-mindedness, but that's a philosophy paper I wrote years ago and not really pertinent to this review, eh?).

Things to look forward to reading about: love/loss, assholes (figuratively), other people, self-reflection, existence, dongs, family, other things.

A poem I found especially relevant was "it doesn't take much," a 'love lost' themed poem that is ridiculously short and sweet for the power it conveys, additionally, it involved facebook. The simplicity of it and the emotion I was left feeling seemed to be skewed, but, it was real, and it was really fucking good.

The title of his poetry collection is also the title of the poem which included this gem of a line:

"i think you’re very pretty and want to kiss you//but i don’t want to impose my will on another human being"

After countless pages of writing, days of thought, and late conversations with good people, Poncho sums up everything I have felt in the past two years when in proximity to an attractive person that reciprocates my feelings -- in two lines. He's insightful and damn, Mister Peligroso might be a feminist's dream boy...

Poncho is reminiscent of many of his contemporaries but also extremely fresh. This isn't 'just another' Tao Lin'atator. His style is extremely effective, dripping in self-reflection and self-awareness and nestled neatly into free verse/free form poetry. I made some short notes while reading, simply marking page numbers and random thoughts. Here are a few of the key words festooned throughout my scratchwork: "fucked up, fuckbroYES, lol'd, grimaced, recoiled, grotesque, fucking rip my heart out, wow real talk, damn, wtf." ...which gives you insight into my literary and analytical capabilities but also his effect on my self.

Perhaps the most illuminating/introspective poem in The Romantic (though all of the poems are introspective in nature, I found this to be 'the most' illuminating) was titled "why am i writing all this goddamned poetry" which included the lines:

"damn it dad//why you gotta make me have no real problems//and be a really good role model//and allow me to pursue my passion// without forcing me to do things you want me to//so that you can live vicariously through me//like some dads do (i am told (by movies/tv))//damn it dad//damn it dad why you gotta play me like that//thanks"

To sum it up, buy Poncho's poetry collection when it hits the physical world on (TBD) and maybe follow him on twitter or lurk from afar or something. It's damn good poetry and not 'shitty' or 'trying to hard' or anything. I see good things for this man.

check out his website too.