4.5 out of 5 stars
On Amazon (universal link)
How I discovered this book: it was submitted to Rosie's Book Review Team, of which I am a member.
In a Nutshell: Poems about the trials and joys of motherhood.
I've never considered myself one who appreciates poetry, but lately I've found myself liking the type featured in this book - short pictures of an emotion, many of them free verse. A Mother's Lament is a raw look at some of the realities of the state of motherhood, straight from the heart. I've read a couple of Nikki Rodwell's poems on social media, and think she has a definite talent for encapsulating a situation and plumbing its joys and depths, in just a few words. 'The Swamp' so articulately describes the pain of deep family rifts, with the end verse telling the child that behind all the difficulty, the mother's love still remains. 'Peace', which comes next, is like a sequel to this.
Other favourites: 'Overboard', three short verses about the carrying of and giving birth to a child, alienation as the child grows ('Mid voyage your compass went awry' - love that), and an image of the mother treading water, 'hands clutching to driftwood' as she waits for the child's return. I think this was my favourite of all of them. 'Broken Pieces' is in a similar vein. I smiled at 'I love you but I don't like you' - I heard my own mother say similar about my sister and me on more than one occasion!
Then there is 'Brave' - a real gem; motherly advice about not following the crowd. I also like 'Mirage' - sad and beautiful. The collection ends with 'A Mother's Prayer for her Children' - but what is 'the golden rule'?!
Most of the verses are topped by a small, relevant graphic, which adds so much to them - these little pictures somehow give them all more meaning, and I think the cover is perfect. It's a fine collection; Nikki Rodwell, you are a poet!