In her second poetry collection, Melody Lee builds upon the poetic voice we have all come to love, while also evolving in “Vine” with an increased focus on fantasy, inspiration, and passion.
The book is divided into sections of vines: clematis, honeysuckle, jasmine, poison ivy, and wisteria. The garden that she has created focuses on the different emotions that each symbol evokes in the reader: strength, happiness, love and sensuality, soul-searching, and perseverance in the face of adversity.
The imagery and use of fantasy flawlessly weaves each topic together with the underlying theme of nature enduring through each section. I love the way she divided this collection into sections based on different types of vines because it plays so perfectly into the mystical and magical theme woven through the book’s pages.
Each section opens with a brief description of why the specific vine was chosen, and we can all find elements of each vine of nature that we feel describes our personalities or our current situations.
Melody uses nature as a profound tool in her poetry, drawing parallels to our experiences and the beauty of the world around us. It’s a very empowering thing to be able to relate to such breathtaking elements of nature, and I think that her use of vines throughout was a perfect symbol to use as her underlying theme.
I love that each “vine” was carefully selected to inhibit certain emotions in the reader, depending on subject matter. It was such a creative way to tie everything together.
“I wake with the taste of poetry on my tongue, sticky on my pillow as if I dreamt of falling in meandering pastures of honeysuckles.”
In this poem titled “Honey,” Melody writes about her deep appreciation of poetry. Her writing encourages readers to experience the words, as it draws in the senses and immerses you in a world of imagery.
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One of the things I love most about this collection is the personal undertones delivered throughout the book. While we have grown to love Melody through “Moon Gypsy,” this collection gives us an additional personal touch. She discusses some of her favorite things: Frankenstein, Edgar Allen Poe, gothic corsets, and the color purple.
She discusses some of her personal experiences with heartbreak and falling in love. Her words are so relatable while also giving you an exclusive look at what makes her who she is. It takes a talented writer to be able to combine the personal and the relatable in such a seamless way.
Melody knows her readers and provides us all with a safe haven in her words. Her work gives us a chance to press pause on the chaos of our lives and get lost in her mythical and enchanting world of words. When you start reading, you are immediately transported to the garden of her soul, where you get to take a tour of all the different plants that grow there and find the ones that resonate with you and your personal story.
Another thing I love about Melody’s writing is the wisdom she shares with us throughout the collection. She discusses the importance of discovering ourselves on our journey to happiness. She supports the empowerment of self and our fellow women.
And, she gives some incredible life advice about not falling prey to the money trap or worrying too much about what others think of us. Her writing is an inspiring world of fantasy and also a relatable sphere of real-life advice that we can implement into our day-to-day when we have to return from our journey to Melody’s beautiful realm of imagery.
An excerpt from her poem “Sages” reads:
“You‘ll only find your extraordinary wings when you let go of hate and greed and material things. Oh, those old artistic souls with poets‘ hearts and gypsy blood. Likewise old sages: They know, they know, they know.”
Melody does a fantastic job of combining elements of fantasy with relatable and personal encounters. She is imaginative and eloquent, a superb story-teller.
Those of us who already love Melody’s writing will fall even more in love with her words. And, for those of you who are experiencing Melody’s poetry for the first time, prepare to be delighted by “Vine”.