Title: The Opulence Of Invention
Author: E. P. Mattson
About The Author
E. P. Mattson is a native Californian poet and multi-disciplinary artist. His work is keenly concerned with inner transformation, the supreme authority of the individual over the collective, and the profound healing power of the arts and the natural world. In his professional life, he’s worked as an artist on everything from theatrical plays, to video games, to blockbuster Hollywood films. But after many years of collaboration, he is now focusing on his personal artistic works, following the white rabbit of the spirit during these astounding times of transformation and upheaval. Currently, he’s at work on a book of travel poetry and photography, a collection of short plays, and the follow-up to the Opulence Of Invention. This is his debut work as a poet.
A sprawling work of poetry and original illustrations roaming the landscapes of the mythic and the surreal. At times lyrical and darkly humorous with a sharp satirical edge, celebrating the human experience, the avant-garde and the beauty of the natural world. Featuring 13 dreamlike line drawings created in pen and ink.
Poems range from odes to rainforests, rock stars and robber barons, to elegies of loved ones passed, cinematic dreams and surrealist fantasies, reflections and realizations.
In the spirit of the iconoclast, E. P. lampoons mass conformity, war profiteering and media manipulation while amplifying that lone voice in the wilderness, the cry of the Individual who has been pushed far out into the wild perimeters of civilization. And throughout the book, there is a love of freedom, imagination, and the communal alchemy of sharing bold truths with fellow souls around a literary campfire.
True to its name, the book The Opulence Of Invention is a grand sprawling work of art. There is something about the tone used by the poet that evokes the feeling of magnificence and the fantastic.
The opening poem sets the book straight on to its chosen path by the words of the poet. The style of the poetry in this book is sharp, even a little edgy, the choice of words and the short sentences are apt for what the poet wants to convey. The poems have a lot of repeated sounds and rhymes are strong and powerful.
What stands out are the pen and ink drawings, the first one that we encounter at the beginning of the book draws the reader in, and all the rest don’t disappoint either. The poet has used shape poetry to great effect and the placement of the words on the page enhance the reading experience.
The words Run Outside, and the guitar shape, are just two examples, a teaser, meant to churn up an appetite for more, that is well satisfied as the book progresses.
Normally, I prefer to name my favourites in a book, but as I read this one, I kept on updating my choices so many times that in the end, I decided to let the readers make their own choices. Still, I want to point out a few of the lines that I liked:
Road sign beckoned like faded postcards
leading us to this numb pilgrimage of thirst (from Desert Poem)
Your body is a travelling renaissance fair of carnal pleasure, a key made of flesh that opens the little gates of heaven. (from Body Freedom)
And if our world is an Eden of mist
these are teams of white mustangs
speaking in plumes of loss (from Clouds)
By no means a bedtime read, this book, a beautiful amalgam of poetry and prose, needs the reader to be alert and engaged on various levels to be able to fully enjoy the poet’s creativity. I took a long while reading it, slowly degusting the pages, and I am very impressed by the creativity and effort put in by Mr Mattson.
A great read for all poetry lovers!