Reviewed by Molly Martin
This is a delightful little work of twenty-two stimulating odes written for and about everything from the writer’s pets to what might have been ‘IF.’
Within the lines of “That’s Life” is presented: ‘The future will happen, despite what we ask. The present is precious, a time to enjoy all life’s moments, pain, hope and joy.’ Laing introduces Kaspar in “My Best Mate”, along with “Unspoken Love” portraying the unspoken devotion of a dog. I especially enjoyed odes “Cats” and “Break of Day” which are both directed toward my favourite critter: cats.
The question of what might have been is asked in the ode: “If”. ‘Have you ever wondered what might have been, if you’d been born of a different being?’ “Games that we Played” and “Summer Daze” ‘Just ponder about this lovely vision of two young girls, having loads of fun, in the long days and the hot summer sun’ forward the idea of childhood happiness. “Day Dream” time ruminations during a walk in nature, “I am What I Am” lauding an acceptance of self while “The Cross”, written about soldiers, along with “Magical Mist” (‘Our home town framed by this special treat. The magical mist spell was now complete!’) are guileless fine reading.
“Twilight Years” (‘Some of these folk, at the sunset of life are unable to talk, but manage in spite of all odds, to smile from inside.’) and “A Tranquil Walk” offer plain feel-good odes, while “Tinderbox” and “One Careless Match” are written about a scourge here in the US as well as in Australia. Wild fire is a terrifying experience when viewed close up or from afar.
“Forget-Me-Not” with ‘A Cottage and garden called Forget-Me-Not’, “The Trek” and “Seduction” each hold a surprise for the reader to enjoy. “Grains of Time” is Laing at her poignant best.
“The Light of Hope” and “An Ode to the Phantom Light” are written following Laing’s visit to a lighthouse. Writer Laing again proves her marvelous talent as author, children’s writer, poet. “Mind’s Eye”, filled with twenty-two very enjoyable works is a treat. The vast array of subject matter has proven no undue challenge for author Laing. Each ode is marvelously wrought.
The book is a perfect companion to a warm sunny afternoon sipping lemonade in the hammock on the porch, or curled up with a cup of hot chocolate in a huge chair in front of the fire in the midst of a January snow storm.
Mind’s Eye, by Wendy Laing
Crystal Dreams, 2002