Review of The Phantom’s Dolphin by Anahit Arustamyan.
Here is my review of The Phantom’s Dolphin by Anahit Arustamyan, which I have posted on Goodreads and on Amazon.com
Having enjoyed reading the first two books by Anahit Arustamyan, My Wandering Muse and My Lyrical Tongue, I was eager to read her new one, The Phantom’s Dolphin. Certainly, her new book is as good as her first two. From the first page, her words held me in their spell. “Poetry in prose. Philosophical and lyrical poems expressing wisdom and romantic feelings.” Such is the way she describes her works. Born in Armenia, she has found her own unique way of expressing her thoughts and feelings in the English language, of which she has a great command.
The mind likes puzzles. It also likes to solve them. Each of her prose poems, as she describes them, is a puzzle, a riddle with questions posed but never answered, a maze entered with no way out found. So she is a maze maker, a puzzle creator, but with no solutions, resolutions. Out on the sea, she finds no harbour. Her questioning, questing spirit asks questions of dolphins, cranes and other birds, without expecting answers. She writes very finely. Even those who have read a lot of poetry in different styles will be refreshed to find that her poems are unique, like no other. Her poems are often moving, like when she writes of the death of her only brother, and some are disturbing, as when she speaks of what she calls the Armenian genocide.
Each one of her poems are worth quoting in full, but as quite a few of her lines are addressed to a dolphin, here is one called White Dolphin, to give an idea of the mood and style of her book:
“Who are you, white dolphin? What are you searching for in this mysterious sea? Are you a wanderer like me? Who knows what the waves may pledge? Are you a sailor, white dolphin? Do you know why the boats flee? I have found you not to leave the sea for a blind coffin. Let me cling to your fin! The naked truth isn’t bound to the lips of the sea. That’s why the boats creep into the sky’s sleeves. I have nothing but my blenching dreams. Is the naked truth bound to a smoky inn? The minds are taking off their clothes in the inn’s feast. Who knows what is hidden in the mist? The boats still flee without hearing their own din. White dolphin! I have found you to cling to your fin.”
Anahit Arustamyan deserves to have her books read by many people. She is a fine, original writer. Like her first two books, My Wandering Muse and My Lyrical Tongue, The Phantom’s Dolphin is a great book, a wonderful maze to wander in, an absorbing puzzle to study.
My Wandering Muse, My Lyrical Tongue and The Phantom’s Dolphin by Anahit Arustamyan can be found on Amazon.com Amazon U.K. and Lulu. She posts her poems on poetry sites on Face Book such as Uncaged Emotions, Poetry and Literary Feast.