You're the Froth On My Soy Cappuccino: Poems for the Present by Don Behrend
|You're the Froth On My Soy Cappuccino: Poems for the Present by Don Behrend|
|Reviewer: Jill Murphy|
|Summary: Light verse collection with humorous and joyful takes on modern life. A pleasure to read but, more importantly, a pleasure to say out loud.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 112||Date: December 2018|
You're the Froth On My Soy Cappuccino begins with A Modern Love Story:
You’re the froth on my soy cappuccino
You’re the spread on my paleo toast
You’re the nose of my GM-free Pinot
You’re organic, my love. You’re the most!
Ha! How can you not laugh at this gently mocking take on love in the hipster world? This poem sets the tone for a volume of light verse. Light is the best word for it too because Don Behrend enjoys gently mocking the sillier aspects of modern life but it's never done with cruelty. Not least because the vignettes he provides are not only those things that have made us roll our eyes or giggle, but those things we recognise in ourselves and make us smile even though they are daft.
I enjoyed Vox Populi - a pointed take on the tribalism of politics and political discourse:
Hapless voters, asked to choose
Between such contradictory views
Are apt to raise the people’s voice
And make an unexpected choice
Yes, politicians: beware what you wish for while you tub thump. It might just come true. Or, there again, it might not. Either way, you may face some unintended consequences. There is a lot in this collection about the highs and lows of online life: - selfies, memes, social media. You'll see yourself and those you know in a lot of them.
Foolish Questions is fabulous: questions and suggestions from history that were roundly mocked at the time - about evolutions, atoms, the continental drift - but were shortly confirmed by science. It ends, pithily:
There’s a stratagem for solving an enigma
That is known to every murder-mystery sleuth:
If you ask a foolish question you may get a rude reply
But it could be that you’ve stumbled on the truth
Many of the poems are about animals and are charming. Among the octopuses and the tortoises, you might find an interloper:
The three-toed sloth Incites my wrath; The two-toed, scarcely less
They bring to mind The five-toed kind – My species, I confess
And, even though the entire thing is endlessly quotable, that's all you're getting. I'll leave you to enjoy the brevity of Sins and Follies and Useful Words without me. Just mind your Food Ignorance, pronounce quinoa correctly and keep your Erotesis to yourself!
We don't usually cover poetry here at Bookbag Towers. But we couldn't resist You're the Froth On My Soy Cappuccino. There's a real dearth of light verse around and we are the worse for it. If poetry is to be truly accessible and a genuinely family affair, it benefits from metre and rhyme. The rhythm and cadence in this volume makes the poems easy to speak aloud and thus easier to share and remember. And the punchlines all have a proper punch, even though you know they're coming. If the purpose of literature is to entertain, this slim volume delivers in bucketloads.
More like this, please!
If, like me, you enjoy some light verse, you could also look at The Dictionary of Dads: Poems by Justin Coe and Steve Wells, which is aimed at children but can be enjoyed by adults too.
You can read more book reviews or buy You're the Froth On My Soy Cappuccino: Poems for the Present by Don Behrend at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy You're the Froth On My Soy Cappuccino: Poems for the Present by Don Behrend at Amazon.com.
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