This Is Not a Spectacle

This Is Not a Spectacle

The extended version of This Is Not a Spectacle explores human curiosity towards strangers and investigates where curiosity becomes fascination with another’s grief or misfortune from afar. The poems range from my experiences of a car accident, my own fascination of others and strangers’ impressions of me. It is an expression of anger from those who least want to be stared...

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Title:This Is Not a Spectacle
Author:Isabelle Charlotte Kenyon
Rating:
Edition Language:English

This Is Not a Spectacle Reviews

  • A.L.D. Chalom

    As if you could flip a switch and simply step into someone else's world view, Kenyon takes us on a trip exploring duality, parallels and the pull and tug experiences between two worlds when you finally see both versions. I feel as if I'm in a stream of consciousness when I read the words - sometimes scattered, sometimes not complete sentences. This is how my mind speaks to itself. This is hurtful. This is mending.This is stunning! Buy.

    - A.L.D. Chalom / author of "ONE" and the printpoetics chapb

    As if you could flip a switch and simply step into someone else's world view, Kenyon takes us on a trip exploring duality, parallels and the pull and tug experiences between two worlds when you finally see both versions. I feel as if I'm in a stream of consciousness when I read the words - sometimes scattered, sometimes not complete sentences. This is how my mind speaks to itself. This is hurtful. This is mending.This is stunning! Buy.

    - A.L.D. Chalom / author of "ONE" and the printpoetics chapbook series.

    "I’ve worn my coat to hide my breasts –

    nonetheless,

    you stare regardless.

    Though I find,

    a little less,

    if I wear my glasses –

    what can they represent to you

    to make you feel so worthless?"

  • Bianca Bowers

    I discovered Isabelle Kenyon's poetry on Twitter, and I'm glad that I did.

    In her chapbook, 'This is not a Spectacle', Miss Kenyon takes the reader on a poetic journey into the social ills that plague the private and public spaces in modern society.

    From the street children in Mumbai with "balloon stomachs", to the slave labour in a sweat shop where a "friendly face" becomes a "dollar sign", to the homeless whose signs and pleas are ignored by the more fortunate, and behind closed doors, into do

    I discovered Isabelle Kenyon's poetry on Twitter, and I'm glad that I did.

    In her chapbook, 'This is not a Spectacle', Miss Kenyon takes the reader on a poetic journey into the social ills that plague the private and public spaces in modern society.

    From the street children in Mumbai with "balloon stomachs", to the slave labour in a sweat shop where a "friendly face" becomes a "dollar sign", to the homeless whose signs and pleas are ignored by the more fortunate, and behind closed doors, into domestic violence, where "black pints cloud his vision".

    The "Me Too" campaign is also given a voice in Section Six (the final section), aptly titled "Don't Stare at Me -- Don't Judge Me." My favourite lines from this section are:

    "You try to claim my body for your own

    with roving eyes.

    I’ve worn my coat to hide my breasts –

    nonetheless,

    you stare regardless."

    Overall, I enjoyed this book and look forward to watching this young poet evolve in the future.

  • Julia Cirignano

    Touch, feel, smell, and experience Isabelle Kenyon’s poetry. Within this collection, Kenyon is observant and confessional. While analyzing other people’s weaknesses and the way they give into societal norms, she also explores her own insecurities, which makes the reader like her. As a reader, I was interested in the person she is just as much as I was interested in her poetry.

    This modern collection of poetry highlights many current trends such as social media, without being cliché. She points o

    Touch, feel, smell, and experience Isabelle Kenyon’s poetry. Within this collection, Kenyon is observant and confessional. While analyzing other people’s weaknesses and the way they give into societal norms, she also explores her own insecurities, which makes the reader like her. As a reader, I was interested in the person she is just as much as I was interested in her poetry.

    This modern collection of poetry highlights many current trends such as social media, without being cliché. She points out flaws in social media trends, but commiserates with lines such as, “virtual reality more satisfying than your own.”

    I really enjoyed Kenyon’s metaphors that made me think. She uses comparisons and similes that seemed a bit random, but I like that she was thinking out of the box. I also really enjoyed what Kenyon left out. For example, her poem “Car Park Scene” says just enough. She leaves her readers wanting more, but in a good way. This also happens in “Me Too: Spoken Word”, a truly moving poem.

    I also really enjoyed Kenyon’s choice to not focus solely on lthe typical love story within this collection. She talks about train rides with strangers, homeless people, interracial relationships, his grandmother’s death, and much, much more.

    If I had one criticism it would be to take out the sections. They didn’t seem to correspond with the poems all the time, so maybe turning them into poems themselves would make the book flow a bit better.

    Besides that, I absolutely loved this book! Check of some of my favorite lines below.

    “Close knit communities mapped out by rivers of running raw sewage where/Corpse children with balloon stomachs play with dusty dogs-”

    “Who are we?/We are drink, we are music; we are pretending, we are stumbling, we are lost-/In the dark we are only teenage hunger.”

  • Eden Sleepwalker

    In “This Is Not a Spectacle” the poet embarks on a quiet journey, walking amongst human lives, noticing, observing.

    The lyrical persona is curious and is present; witnessing details about people that mankind is unaware of or just never takes the pain to notice. "When you want to know a stranger, when you want to feel their pain", are her exact words.

    But poet Isabelle Kenyon cares, she is not just curious to watch and she displays little stories successfully weaved into poems that bring powerful,

    In “This Is Not a Spectacle” the poet embarks on a quiet journey, walking amongst human lives, noticing, observing.

    The lyrical persona is curious and is present; witnessing details about people that mankind is unaware of or just never takes the pain to notice. "When you want to know a stranger, when you want to feel their pain", are her exact words.

    But poet Isabelle Kenyon cares, she is not just curious to watch and she displays little stories successfully weaved into poems that bring powerful, vivid images to the reader's mind. She is concerned about heart-aching humans, sensing their loneliness, their misery, their suffering and she reports them from her point of view, often with haunting words, probably the best example being "This is not a spectacle", which is also the book's title, dealing with the outsiders of our society, the homeless people.

    In another poem, she expresses her love, care, and devotion to her granny Olga, to whom the book is dedicated, a beloved person who had been there for her in the roughest times of her life.

    Overall, this one of a kind poetry collection, gives me the impression of a notebook or a diary at the poet's hands, written at the exact moment she was experiencing each event. This is the unique style of Isabelle Kenyon.

  • Katie

    This morning we are travelling into a poetry collection by Isabelle Kenyon, which is a social commentary on a number of people, and subjects - growing old, poverty, the Internet etc.

    What I loved were the sentences in the poems, which sometimes almost have the form of prose. Take this sentence for example, "goldfish gasping, inhaling cloying cotton, breath tightening like a plastic bag around your neck," That amount of description is perfect, and gave this reader beautiful imagery.

    I loved the po

    This morning we are travelling into a poetry collection by Isabelle Kenyon, which is a social commentary on a number of people, and subjects - growing old, poverty, the Internet etc.

    What I loved were the sentences in the poems, which sometimes almost have the form of prose. Take this sentence for example, "goldfish gasping, inhaling cloying cotton, breath tightening like a plastic bag around your neck," That amount of description is perfect, and gave this reader beautiful imagery.

    I loved the poems on older people too, describing care homes, and as something I can personally relate with, made me feel sad. Take this, "she wears a bright, silk scarf

    a flicker of past beauty

    Remnants of character hidden in the

    Cavities of a worm-ridden brain,"

    Homeless, which I believe was the inspiration for this chapbook, describes a homeless man fitting, instead thought to be merely drunk.

    And just when you think Kenyon might be finished her book delivers three poems Teenagers at a Bus Stop, Raised by the Internet, and HAIR, which are all brilliant poems, and shows what poetry can do best, hold up a mirror to our own lives, and shine the truths of our world.

    I'm giving this four footballs because, to use a footballing term, many of the poems are absolute screamers and have you on your feet applauding, or in my case reaching for a pen to write my own poetry. I wouldn't give this five because the book does feel incomplete, and as Kenyon has extended this chapbook I'm sure that will remedy that.

    Reviewed on my blog @flyingthroughthepages

  • Ashley Jean

    This collection of poems captivated me from the first section's lines: "when you want to know a stranger..."

    Kenyon introduces us to a range of people (from young teenagers to the homeless) throughout the collections' six sections. She offers her thoughts as a passenger, a pedestrian, a granddaughter, and herself. With each new section, the reader is introduced to new settings as well. All of these individual elements come together seamlessly to create a refreshing commentary on human existence.

    T

    This collection of poems captivated me from the first section's lines: "when you want to know a stranger..."

    Kenyon introduces us to a range of people (from young teenagers to the homeless) throughout the collections' six sections. She offers her thoughts as a passenger, a pedestrian, a granddaughter, and herself. With each new section, the reader is introduced to new settings as well. All of these individual elements come together seamlessly to create a refreshing commentary on human existence.

    The imagery and musicality of each poem are especially worth reading. Unlike most poetry, which is usually abstract thought, Kenyon's voice is both original and accessible. Above all, her words are tangible, and can be felt in the mind and in the heart: "We are drink, we are music..."

    "Raised by the Internet" spoke to me, as I was in my later years as a teenager, raised in a digital world. "Am I like them do I fit in..." are some of my exact thoughts. Kenyon has a way of making her experiences the reader's –– a key to great poetry.

    While I have not practiced reading poetry in years, it was a pleasure reacquainting myself with the art through Kenyon's vision. I hope to read more from this poet very soon.

  • cheyenne raine

    i enjoyed this collection for various reasons, however, i feel that there was “something” missing. and, i’m not sure why it felt slightly off, but it has daily thoughts and life moments spun into every page- so it was refreshing to turn the mundane and regular things into poems. very well done!

  • Jill Jemmett

    I have never been a big fan of poetry. But when Isabelle Kenyon approached me to review her poetry collection I decided to give it a try, and it was very good.

    The poems are powerful and moving. They are divided into sections such as Homeless, The Care Home, and Hospital Rooms. They are all subjects that we can relate to, but are difficult to discuss.

    A couple of poems really stood out to me. “Raised by the Internet” is about what people post on social media. The things that people post make us th

    I have never been a big fan of poetry. But when Isabelle Kenyon approached me to review her poetry collection I decided to give it a try, and it was very good.

    The poems are powerful and moving. They are divided into sections such as Homeless, The Care Home, and Hospital Rooms. They are all subjects that we can relate to, but are difficult to discuss.

    A couple of poems really stood out to me. “Raised by the Internet” is about what people post on social media. The things that people post make us think we should behave the same way. The final line was the powerful: “Internet trends do not correspond to real friends.”

    “Family member in fur” is another poem that was important to me. It’s about losing a pet. I have experienced that before, and I will again one day. It’s never easy to lose a pet because it’s like losing a child. But the poem described it well.

    I really enjoyed this poetry collection and I recommend it to poetry fans and newcomers alike!

    I received a copy of this book from the author.

  • The Lexington Bookie

    Overall, I thought that these were well written and relatable, but as someone who doesn't read a lot of poetry, I'm not the best to judge. I liked a few poems more than the others- Cain and Letter to My Younger Self- but most of them I felt didn't leave the lasting impact on me that I look forward to with poetry.

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