Deliverance: A Poetic Journey of Redemption
by Paul Kloschinsky
reviewed by Omar Figueras
for the US Review of Books.
“My life had just become dangerous.
I have met a woman
with an alluring smile
and an eagle tattooed to her ass.”
Paul Kloschinsky’s poetry collection explores the full gamut of human emotion, plummeting into the dark chasms of anguish and despair, and rising to the reclamation of the author’s own life, a once-imagined unattainable height, while delving into the concrete details of everyday life.
The poems are structured into stanzas and sections; however, he writes in free verse with little to no rhyme scheme and his pieces take on a conversational tone, thus making the narrative authority familiar to the reader. Themes are far ranging, from portrayals of contemporary life, homages to poets, to religious and spiritual confessionals. The author summons Greco-Roman gods by name, invokes the great writers from the past, and requests that they bestow their wisdom. Kloschinsky also tips his hat to the demons which haunted him years ago and still scratch at his bedroom window at night, never allowing him to forget they are just around the bend. The title poem, “Deliverance,” begins with the classic image of a man lost in a dark wood–akin to Robert Frost’s “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”–and the narrator’s eventual rescue. The piece closes with a second stanza where the narrator envisions and compares his recovery to bright rainbow, a Judeo-Christian and animistic promise from the natural world to humanity.
An honest, heart-felt collection, Kloschinsky’s Deliverance could be considered a poetic chart tracking its author’s stumbles and falls, and eventual rise and skyward climb in his attempt to sing his songs.