"Proceed With Awesome" by seasoned poet Following Whispers is surprisingly his publishing debut, although he has been writing poems for over 20 years.
This book of poetry is a collection that follows the order in which he actually wrote them in, kicking off the with the poem "Birth", it is evident that he is instantly able to transport us to other realms in order to set the scene for addressing subjects, which in this instance is the loss of family members and the resulting frustration and pain, yet he doesn't dwell on his emotions in this example, instead he succinctly displays a reassuring level of understanding and acceptance seldom seen when tackling subject matter that is so personal and potentially this dark.
Tactfully, just as much is said in-between the lines of the poems as within them, yet as we progress deeper into the collection, Following Whispers becomes even more open with the reader, increasingly philosophical and more descriptively explicit in his narrative, as his voice becomes more distinct and confident.
The book has a huge variety of topics, including love; life, death; space; wrestling with one's emotions; nature and natural wonders; acceptable and unreasonable expectations; secrets; victimisation, addiction; academia and career prospects; obsession; unwarranted maliciousness; sexual ecstasy; loneliness; and euphoria. The poems make for a strong, well-rounded collection, but notable highlights include: "Secrets of The Crescent Moon"; "Bad Experiences of Obsession"; "Pressure"; "The Search For True Love"; "Malice"; "Goodbye Already"; the multilingual "Lost In Translation"; "The World Is So Cold"; and "Grateful". He always manages to find a ray of sunshine in any dark clouds, ending the poems on a more positive or decisive note.
As the book's subtitle informs us, this is indeed a poetic journey, one of self-discovery and discovery of the World around us, exploration of the soul, the body and the mind, of the heart and the almost inescapable trappings of human nature and society; plus a journey towards finding 'the one', and much more besides. It is a rewarding read, one that you can go back to time and time again, and interestingly get more from it each time, in short, it is a highly recommended read.