Yves K Morrow’s ‘An Alterable Void’ – a review

Cover art: Mirjana Miric Inalman

Cover art: Mirjana Miric Inalman

Cover art: Mirjana Miric Inalman

Cover art: Mirjana Miric Inalman

Let me begin by saying I love the many and varied talented poets and writers I have had the privilege to meet and read over WordPress. The skill and generosity of all constantly surprise and gladden me, but for me one of my very favourite writers has to be the wonderful Yves K Morrow, the poet at  http://mindlovemisery.wordpress.com/

I am constantly in awe of the work of this amazing writer –to me she is the poetic lovechild of Arthur Rimbaud and Sylvia Plath with some of Poe’s bloodline mixed in for good measure. She is that amazing. She is that good. Her work should be recognised far beyond just her WordPress followers and one day she should be studied by students of great literature.

Again I say it, she is that good. If one day I write a poem that has half her depth and sensibility I will be very proud indeed.

So when she announced she was publishing her first book of poetry – An Alterable Void –   I was delighted and immediately purchased my copy. I have now received it and had the pleasure of reading it from cover to cover in one astonishing sitting and been admirably rewarded for this time by the sheer beauty, breadth and depth of her writing.  And given this I couldn’t wait to pass on the word and do this review so that others can discover and be enriched by reading her wonderful work.

She divides her work in this book in three sections reflecting the theme of her blog – Mind, Love and Misery.

The Mind section is full of brutal, beautiful self-analysis and contemplation of thought. Asymmetry is exquisitely lovely, Contrast is a short burst of illuminating light. Freak Show provides an amazing insight to the fate of forgotten or abandoned writing, while Shaman shows us the poet as mystic.

In Translation she completely under-estimates the beauty of her writing – she shines a harsh and unforgiving light on her method and finds herself wanting in a manner her readers never will.

The Love section is very much a world Rimbaud would recognise and enjoy – a deliciously dark and sensuous collection of work that brings to mind his quest for the derangement of the senses. All the poems are beautiful, but I’d make special mention of Alone – a keen insight to the changing aspects of love – Birdsong for its musical profundity, Frozen and also Molting for simplicity that will break your heart, and the darkly sensual and trippy cadence of Moon Sick and Peyote Angel.

In the Misery section dwell the ghosts of Plath and Poe, highlighted by Yves’ total unique voice which is powerful and wholly her own despite any comparisons I make. Poems like Beggar, Cemetery Heart and Cyanide Butterfly are beautiful and sepulchral. They also expose her inner self with excoriating honesty. Disgraced could be a song that Lucifer might sing, and in Incarnate and in Paper Heart we are again introduced to the poet as mystic.

All in all this collection is superb, just as I anticipated it would be. I hope Yves draws the very wide acclaim she richly deserves. Her writing will make you feel and think deeply, and transport you to a world that is at once both familiar and alien. It is sublime.

I also want to note how wonderful the cover art is, done by the very talented Mirjana Miric Inalman. It perfectly complements this wonderful work with its own dark beauty and otherworldly grace, and displays an artist with similar sensibilities, skill and depth to the poet.

Buy this book if you love great poetry and would like to have a first edition for one of the great poets of our age. The all important link to buy is:



Helen V.

About Helen

I'm drawn to blogging as a way to share ideas and consider what makes us who we are. Whether it's in our working life or our creativity, expression is a means to connect.
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18 Responses to Yves K Morrow’s ‘An Alterable Void’ – a review

  1. Helen I don’t even know what say I am blushing and smiling and completely incoherent this is so sweet you’ve made my day (and then some) I am so glad you enjoyed it! What an honor to be compared to my idols! You underestimate yourself your writing is truly fantastic! I haven’t even received a copy of my own book yet lol

  2. Reblogged this on mindlovemisery and commented:
    My First Book Review!

  3. Excellent review and so warranted. Well done Yves for making this happen and Helen for her honest words on your amazing talent yay girls! 🙂 x

  4. It sounds absolutely wonderful! Thank you so much for bringing it to my attention 🙂

  5. What a wonderful review, so warmly enthusiastic and clearly utterly sincere. Congratulations Yves! I wish you much success with your book, and thanks Helen for bringing it to our attention:-) Blessings, H xxx

  6. philipparees says:

    As usual Helen, always generously supportive. You have certainly whetted this appetite. I have reblogged this post. I agree the cover is sensitive and arresting.

  7. philipparees says:

    Reblogged this on INVOLUTION: Science and God: Mavericks and Inspiration and commented:
    I thought the obvious sincerity of this review ( and its generosity needed sharing) Poets have a hard time.

  8. Tony Single says:

    Can’t wait to receive my copy. I’ve been following her for a little bit, and her work is amazing.

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