Entertainment

A heart for poetry

By Howard Campbell Observer senior writer

Sunday, June 15, 2014    

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THOUGH he has worked as a journalist and educator for over 25 years, Hartley Anderson says poetry has always been close to his heart.

Little Girl Dancing, his first book of poems, was recently released and is available at Amazon.com. It will be in local bookstores soon.

"I have been writing poetry for several years, but this is my first published collection. My poetry fits snugly into the contemporary genre as it explores new dimensions of themes like love, religion, relationships, death, time and parenthood," he explained.

Stylistically, Anderson went for diversity in his collection. Most of the pieces are written in free verse, but according to the author others "conform to the traditional rhyme-centered genres of sonnets, odes, ballads, elegies, etc."

The topics also pack variety. The title poem is about a girl desperately seeking her father's approval, while Final Rites was inspired by the death of Anderson's mother.

Timeless Gem and Doubles Plateau are tributes to University of the West Indies luminaries and outstanding poets, professors Mervyn Morris and Edward Baugh, whom Anderson cites as his biggest literary influences.

Most of the Manchester-born Anderson's life has been spent in classrooms and newsrooms. He has taught at Ardenne High School and Mico University College and worked as a sub-editor at the Gleaner and Jamaica Observer.

Little Girl Dancing is not all about poetry, Anderson points out.

"There are also two short stories included as well as a section for students on Understanding Poetry. This collection should resonate with students at the CSEC, CAPE and tertiary levels," he said.

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