Book review – Memoriam: 100 poems 100 years by Martin Rowe

I discovered Martin via Twitter and I’m glad I did because Memoriam is a great book of war poetry.  I purchased this book on Kindle, so the impact of the cover is lost but the simple red poppy on a white background is very iconic.

The poetry describes the true horrors of WW1, Martin does not hold back on the detail of what the soldiers went through in the trenches and the lasting impact on those that survived.  It does not glorify war.

From the very first lines of the first poem ‘I Flinch’ you are given a stark insight into the destructive nature of war.

“When shells shriek their shrill songs,
Smashing plumes of earth and bony sinew,
Into the foul air.

I flinch.”

But Martin doesn’t just write about the experience of the men.  The poem ‘Oh Pigeon!’ gives a somewhat odd perspective on the experience of a messenger pigeon, saying that I really liked this poem and its eye in the sky view.

“Oh pigeon! What hells await you,
As you fly.
Fly from our fields of slaughter.”

Every poem is very readable, and every poem will make you stop and think.  We can all sit in our cosy homes in the free world because of what was endured by our forebears.  We can buy a poppy in November and pin it to our chest.  We can stand for a minute’s silence.  But in this book is harsh, graphic detail which will really make you appreciate what was sacrificed for our freedom.

“Lest we forget that they fought for us,
The twinkling stars of unborn babes,
Of generations yet to be.”

–          Lest We Forget, Martin Rowe

Posted by

Hi, I'm Karen, creator of blueskydays365.com which is home to my poetry, art and general ramblings. I am the author two collections of poetry, 'Kaleidoscopic Beauty' & 'I am the Stars in the Sky', and the children's book 'All That Glitters' (not yet published). I also enjoy running.

One thought on “Book review – Memoriam: 100 poems 100 years by Martin Rowe

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.