Between the Spine: A Collection of Erotic Love Poems is the latest poetic offering from Adrian Ernesto Cepeda, an exciting erotic film noir travelogue
in a breath of 53 pages that spins. Poet Cepeda won The Children of Orpheus contest/Anthology at Subterranean
Blue Poetry for "We Could've Painted Our Skies Blue" in 2016. He lives and works in Los Angeles, holds a B.A. from the University of Texas and an MFA in
Creative Writing from Antioch University. He has been widely published in journals, including Burning House Press,
Chanterelle's Notebook, Palette Poetry, The Yellow Chair Review, Frontier Poetry, San Diego Reader, The Fem amongst
others. This is the second book of poetry I have reviewed for him, the first being Flashes and Verses . . .
Poetry as erotica has arrived as a popular genre within the last 10 years, a trend in literature that seems to have paralleled the quiet frenzy of writing/reading erotic Haiku and Haiku. As a Western tradition erotica has not been at the forefront of mainline literature since Ancient Rome and Greece.
This Poet is very steeped in culture, writings, quotes, art and can frequently be found posting photographs of mavens with quotes at Twitter and Facebook. Between the Spine begins with a Table of Contents, the titles of the poems when read going down the page present as a poem in itself, intrigued This Writer reads on. The beginnings of poems are often introduced with an inspiration from old and new photos, paintings, a quote, including Anais Nin, Pablo Neruda, Dunya Mikhail, Pedro Salinas, Virginia Woolf, F. Scott Fitzgerald, giving an oeuvre to the poem, like a very sophisticated introduction to a flavour of ice cream.
The poetry suggests making love in an elevator, a hotel room, whilst cleaning the house, cooking in the kitchen, doing laundry in the laundry room, kissing on the streetcar, scooping ice cream for a cone, texting, smoking a cigarette, between the flowers in the garden, the landscape becomes the affair, beautifully woven within erotic climes. In "The Sensation is the Same" it is as if a book of poetry is his lover, the 2 exist inside the other, a play on intimacy with the written word. It is a movie within dialogue of place, a dislocated thought train that is a soft métier, a progression. The writing often switches between the male and female voice, love from the perspective of the other, the other with place. The varied voices suggest a carousel, old memories, new memories, of the inspiration of art and literature and famous people, of the great imagine.
From Egon Schiele's Embrace circa 1917
"He said, lying
together like unfinished
sketches, scribbled lines
on a page. He wanted
me to fill him, make
him color, no longer
invisible drafts like
the wind, he longed . . ."
The poetry titillates, plays with the light and darkness, quietly disembodied, places of silence, places of thoughts, an unspoken agreement of intimacy. An idea of meaning and place. It is alluring, there is always something fascinating about someone with water when the world is largely a desert. A great read for hot Summer nights, Between the Spine by Adrian Ernesto Cepeda.