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Echo Ridge Reviewed
Norm Goldman --  bookpleasures.com Norm Goldman -- bookpleasures.com
Montreal, QC
Friday, January 21, 2022

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Author: Charles Dowling Williams


ISBN-10 ‏ ‎173763952 ISBN-13 ‎ 978-1737639527

Are you feeling saturated with the Covid tsunami of frightful news and the turmoil affecting your everyday existence? An excellent remedy to soothe your stress is to pick up a copy of Charles Dowling Williams' Echo Ridge and read all or some of his haiku poetry.

This inspiring selection of haiku will soothe your emotions. It will put matters into perspective, help free your mind, become attuned to your senses, and invite you to notice the world around you.

Williams is a lawyer in Munfordville, Hart County, Kentucky. He is also a tree farmer. For his forestry and conservation practices, he has earned many awards. His first work of Haiku, Seasons of West Wind Farm, was published in 2016. This was followed by The Green Road of Zen in 2018. He has also composed many varied works of fiction and non-fiction.

On the opening page to Echo, Ridge Williams informs his readers that he has kept calendar diaries for over 40 years. It is from these notebooks that comprise the origin of many of his haiku poems.

Haiku (pronounced "high-koo") is a Japanese style of poetry considered the smallest form of poetry in the world.

Although the first trait we notice about a haiku poem is its form, where the first and last lines of the poem have five syllables and the second or middle line has seven, it is necessary to proceed beyond its form towards the subject. You will then be able to determine its effects on you.

Williams's compilation demonstrates that Haiku poets convey specific emotions and images. For illustration, here is one culled from Williams' selection dated June 15th, 2019, at 4:00 a.m.

"silence in the house

this fragrance of wild roses

wakes me with a roar"

You can virtually feel the silence at this early hour of the morning and breathe the magnificent rose fragrance that will inevitably wake you!

Another composed on June 2nd, 2018, illustrates a memorable picture where Williams pares down the bare essentials in just fourteen words, forcing every syllable and word count.

"snakes dance when mating

the quick coil of a tango-

while hiding from hawks"

Notice the realistic imagery that sketches a picture of the writhing and twisting, the snakes never apart. No doubt, our minds are drawn well into the present.

How about some nostalgia? In this one, Williams leaves a lot unsaid concerning his association with his father. It is about feelings and the connection of words to Williams' father experiences as he hunts for nightcrawlers.

Readers are presented with the opportunity to take part in the writing by bringing back one's own childhood reminiscences. Quite à propos, the verse is introduced with the following remarks: "a man who loved fishing and raising night crawlers."

"hunting nightcrawlers

beside my young blond father-

June nights long ago"

In this one composed on June 5th 2020, at 4:00 a.m. Williams captures a unique quiet and intimate stillness moment providing more peace in life.

"deep night early June

bull-frog-hoot owl serenade-

three of us awake"

What I came away with reading the haiku poems in Echo Ridge were Williams' sincere and penetrating words. These produce brilliant snapshots of time, place, season, and nature, which permitted me to be in the moment and connect with the themes. It also had a calming effect that transported me to a different place and time and made me experience the text of each poem as if I was there. Many of the haiku poems led me to relate more profoundly to nature. Images of changing seasons transported me back to time and places I have encountered in the past.

Follow Here To Read Norm's Interview With Charles Dowling Williams

 Norm Goldman of Bookpleasures.com

News Media Interview Contact
Name: Norm Goldman
Title: Book Reviewer
Group: bookpleasures.com
Dateline: Montreal, QC Canada
Direct Phone: 514-486-8018
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