Unrequited love, losing what might have been and visiting memories of what was; are frequently parts of our human experience. In ‘I messaged My Ex’, Field’s moments are captured with a rawness that shares real insights to the feelings and internal tension in that ‘stew of a process’ and for many readers, a lens that they see their own experiences and journeys within.
‘I messaged My Ex’ walks through the ‘stew of the process’ with all the moments mentioned and more. While the pictures draw the reader to their own contemplation the process accelerates, moving from loss to releasing, accepting and turning from the past to futures unknown.
A book for anyone who has lost love, or for friends who are facing that journey, another Field book of facing yourself, being honest and facing forward.
The poems themselves are structured in a narrative arc beginning with a study on the depths of grief as a result of divorce, illustrated in “Invisible Me”: “I offer you myself // I ask so little in return // Alone, I still yearn.” Field then delves into the consequences of sacrificing identity for love, leaving the seared ex in a place where “Invisibility unbecomes me // Yet its curse holds me fast”. The collection’s mosaic then shifts toward themes of renewal, a reclaiming of identity through self love, and above all hope for romance to blossom anew: I too will be a painter. // Bring your broken canvas, // Rejected by other painters, // I will cover it in deep love.”
Although some readers may find Field’s poems straightforward to the point of dullness and reliant on cliché, others may be moved by the collection’s unflinching honesty and occasional lines of real inspiration, such as “As long as I have known her // I try to walk the approach // Wearing heart skinned slippers”. To the best of his abilities, Field offers readers a courageous, introspective poetic report on his passage through the stages of post-divorce grief, covering the pages themselves with deep love.
Takeaway: A straightforward, heartfelt collection about recovering and acceptance after a divorce.
Great for fans of: Rupi Kaur, Courtney Peppernell’s Pillow Thoughts.
Design and typography: A-
Marketing copy: B+
“As the sages say, ‘All the world loves a lover’ As Samuel Field is discovering, they love even more an ‘unrequited lover’, those who Leonard Cohen called the ‘Beautiful Losers’.
Everyone has unrequited love of some nature. Samuel has worked his way through such, to a place where he is unbound and free to hope for the mutually shared as in Blake’s ‘What does he/she require? She/He needs the lineaments of gratified desire.’
Asked to review an earlier book BECOMING UNBROKEN, I was intrigued by his proposition
Pain Isn’t chosen
And that was anchored, as these books words are, in local clean imagery.
In I MESSAGED MY EX, I was wonderfully rewarded by the exciting journey as will other readers in a book worth having. It becomes a delight to see his breakthrough to personal calm. But further his marriage of text and photos takes a deep understanding of the intricacies that relationships require, hence the photos are as much symbolic as intellectually
arranged and selected.
His epitaph is hauntingly resolved.
Laying in bed
What’s that noise?
What kind of ghost?
Sounding like you
Yet just the echo of memories
Reverbing in the stillness of my now!
And I invite you with your own unrequited love to join in a private but ever human journey”
Peter Jeffery OAM