Book review: Eclipse Of The Heart by Matthias Pantaleon ~Ajasa-Info

Love is full of sighs
Book title: Eclipse Of The Heart
Author: Matthias Pantaleon
Publisher: Jones Walker Publishers, Nigeria
Pages: 66
Year of publication; 2012 (Revised edition 2023)
Reviewer: Adjekpagbon Blessed Mudiaga

“Eclipse Of The Heart” is a collection of poems written by an enterprising poet, playwright, and lyricist, Matthias Pantaleon, who is still expanding his coast in the production of creative literary works in the committee of global writers’ circles.
Having known the author as a dashing bloke with a caring heart over the years, it is not surprising to read his humanitarian, insightful and deep – seated love for justice, equality and fairness expressed in this amorous poetry volume.
The 66-page collection contains two sections namely “Book One” and “Book Two.” The first section is made up of 25 poems, likewise the second section, and makes a total of 50 titles in its contents.

Some of the poems in the first section includes “Eclipse Of The Heart,” “My Darling,” “Tall Drink,” “In The City Of Crows And Kites,” “You Must Love Me Equally,” “Unhurt Yourself,” “You Come First,” “When A Woman Loves A Man,” and so on and so forth. The second section poems includes the following titles: “I Think Dearly Of You,” “Your Mascara Says lt All,” “Keep Your Distance,” “Someone Like You,” “The Lesser Of Two Evils,” “I Am Not Yours,” “A Woman’s Truth,” “It Is Hard To Love Eve,” “lrrational Love,” “Bitter – Sweet Memories” etcetera.

The pieces generally borders on the business and politics of love – whether authentic, fake, obsession, worries and challenges in the relationships between males and females. The author paints different intriguing imaginative natural pictures with the power of love among humans, by likening the emotional phenomenon to the natural rhythms of the winds, waves, rivers, springs, oceans, sky, mountains, moon, sun, stars and whatever you could think of in the universal ecosystem. This creates both mental and psychological images about different experiences many folks have passed through or are still passing through in their relationships with their spouses or lovers.

Hence, the reader is reminded about William Shakespeare’s play titled “Romeo and Juliet,” wherein a character says “…Love is a smoke full of sighs…” There are both lovely and bitter sighs in the field of love as humans are not perfect beings. There should however, be a limit of enduring pains and deceits in any relationship between humans, seems to be the hallmarks of some of the poems.

For instance, in a two – stanza poem titled “My Darling” in the collection, the poet expresses his love for his self – known lover in the lines thus:
“If you are reading this
Do not smile just yet
This kid misses you with
A frown and a brow

If you feel sad reading this
Do not frown just yet
This kid loves you with
A smile and a mile”

This shows the poet is tenderly inclined to loving an Eve’s daughter, whether as a child born by a woman, or a child that cares for his sister or girlfriend, in as much a biblical verse says: “Go ye and multiply.

Moreover, the poet goes prescriptive in what makes a woman a true lover and comforter of a responsible man, by using a poem titled “When A Woman Loves A Man” to express his emotions thus:
“When a woman loves a man
She recites the grace twice
Spend the night in his shirt
Because it smells like him

When a woman loves a man
She protects him with flight of butterflies
At home, with soothing melodies
Of singing canary and whistling cockatiels

When a woman loves a man
She becomes her guardian angel
Nothing dare come between
Her weakness goes in unison with her strength

When a woman loves a man
She makes supplication on his behalf
Her spirit watches over him
Through mud and ashes

When a woman loves a man
She teaches him the way of peace
Trust in his judgement like
It is the equal of her soul”

By and large, the poems are written in blank and free verses infused with highly arresting figures of speech, internal rhymes and scansion, that makes the reader nod at intervals, while digesting the rich philosophical thoughts of the poet, about what love truly is, and what is not to be done in the name of love. It is a volume every matured mind should read. The diction is simple but deep with poetic messages for any discerning mind to grasp.

This makes reading the collection worthwhile. It is devoid of obscurantism that most times hinder readers from comprehending the messages in the works of some poets globally.
The author has other published books, and also have some manuscripts in his kitty waiting for publication. One of his popular books is a work titled “Journey To The Unknown.” He is a journalist and member of the Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), Lagos chapter, Nigeria.


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