“And now the ghosts and the dust settle in on my heart and I have no children, no apple trees, or sunshine. Only tears.”
My Mentor, Death is a collection of over 40 of Leslie D. Soule’s best poems, meditating on modernity, loss, and more. With deft language and cutting wit, Soule’s poetry illuminates the twisted landscape of the 21st century, creating a tableau of lost loves, depersonalization, and that specter that comes for all of us: death.
My Mentor, Death includes several poems published by Terror House Magazine in 2018 and 2019.
My Mentor, Death is about death. Death is the reaper which weaves throughout the neo-classical pieces. Death smothers the present under a pillowcase, then drags it into a shadow past or forwards into a future blur. It is cancer, suicide, old age, accidents, separation, ego annihilation. It is the death of personalities, people, elements of human nature evolving out. It is real death, fictional death, the death we fight in ourselves. It could happen anytime. Death can happen today. It is failure. It is socioeconomic, cultural collapse. It’s not death at all; it’s every force of nature, manmade and otherwise, that threatens to consume, silence, strangle, chain, label, compel, and imprison the subject. Death might be a release, a relief, and it would be, if only it would come more invited, more welcomed to us. Which is why it is a teacher, because My Mentor, Death is about a teacher. They are the teacher we meet, and some who leave us. It is about lessons of love, resistance, loneliness, isolation, and how lessons leave bruises, then sometimes break. Sometimes lessons are ones we’re not ready for. The lessons are personal. The lessons are global. They reckon from the past and potentially from futures that won’t come if we’re not more careful. The lesson is never clear. The lesson is one of non-submission, of swimming across a current even if its pulling you under.” — Genelle Chaconas
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