Monday, December 6, 2021

Sunny Days and Sleepless Nights, a review by Giulia Poli Disanto

Review appeared on Bridge Puglia USA, September 2017

sunnydayswebSunny Days & Sleepless Nights, by Tiziano Thomas Dossena, published by Ideapress, is a delightful collection of bilingual poetry split into two parts, the first part consisting of four sections.

It must be said that Dossena’s poetry is founded on the humanity of the poet, with lines enlivened by the delicate presence of the female. Love is sung, desired and perhaps brought about and meant as the permanent yeast of the cosmos, and offers to the reader a lively play of light and shade: Now I yearn for the light/ aware of my incapacity/ of making you understand/ my need of you,/ but the light never appears/ to a blind man/ if not in his fantasy… And again: Now it’s a sunny day/ and I feel different./ I know this will be/ my last voyage and I am afraid…

Right from the first lines, in Sunny days, the poet highlights his familiarity with poetic codes, since “first of all poetry, if it is such, seduces by means of the music of its words”, as Ungaretti said. And it is from this starting-point that Dossena’s poetic expression makes his claim to the ways of the heart and the poetic validity of the feeling that we find throughout the work, from the first line to the last.

The division into sections corresponding to the various nuances of love and light is clear in this compilation, which takes us through the shadows that life inevitably casts on us. Love, therefore, as a feeling bound to life, the light of life and of the desire of a harmonious presence in the universe. Likewise, the other face of love, pain, is not lacking. It is, indeed, the essential shadow that completes life. But it is memory, the treasure chest of the soul, as Aristotele said, that redeems the poet from dreams: One, one hundred farewells/ have no cancelled/ your image…”, recites our Author. Or “Give me your hand,/ close your eyes and dream:/ until tomorrow/ only dreams/ can sustain you.

Only by listening to ourselves can we enter that place where it is possible to grasp the mystery of life and the consoling faculty of memory. The sense of a bygone world is evident in the collection, but also of a newfound one, in which tenderness, doubt and love are strong and recurring emotions that offer the reader concrete and defined images.

As psychologist Aldo Carotenuto affirms, we mustn’t be afraid of our emotions, because life itself is made of emotions. Rationality defines the limits of our actions but cannot put a brake on the emotions of our inner world for which poetry is the spokesperson.

The oxymoron play of light and shade, where shade is as important as light, as a distinctive feature of the human condition, concludes with the second section “Sleepless nights”, which completes the title of the collection. The poet ends this section with The mirror, a metaphor with which he synthesizes his vision of life and where light and shade, the past and the future meld with the luminosity of poetry.

The lovely illustrations of the young artist Francesca Malara, interpret the poetic thought, and complete the work validly.

Giulia Poli Disanto

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