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Compositions on Compassion and Other Emotions

Bob McNeil
Flexible Press
84 pages
Reviewed by Max Rodriguez

Bob McNeil's poetry collection delves deep into the intricacies of love and loss, unraveling the threads of human emotion with a masterful touch. Through a tapestry of verses, McNeil explores the multifaceted nature of life, portraying its complexity, contradictions, and undeniable beauty.

In each poem, McNeil weaves together imagery and emotion, inviting readers into intimate moments of vulnerability and passion. His language is both evocative and poignant, capturing the essence of fleeting moments and eternal longing. Whether celebrating the euphoria of newfound love or mourning the ache of loss and regret, McNeil's words resonate with raw authenticity.

One of the most compelling aspects of Bob McNeil's poetry is his ability to navigate the paradoxes inherent in life. He embraces its contradictions, acknowledging the pain that often accompanies profound connection while celebrating life’s transformative power. Through his verse, McNeil invites readers to confront the complexities of human relationships with honesty and empathy.

McNeil's celebration of love adds another layer of depth to his collection. He tenderly examines the hope that follows love's rapture, while offering solace to those who have experienced heartbreak and disappointment. Yet, even in moments of sorrow, there is a glimmer of hope woven into McNeil's poetry—a reminder that love, in all its forms, leaves an indelible mark on the human heart.

From Compositions on Compassion and Other Emotions:

Unfinished Wishes

Within our thoughts,

We have a love poem

that’s so profound.

Nine muses would ponder it.


Within our thoughts,

We have a love song

that’s so honeyed.

Birds would mimic facets.


Within our thoughts,

We each have a tribute to love

that’s so touching.

We’ll go on creating it

Until our obits are writ.


What sets McNeil's poetry apart is his keen observation of the world around him. He finds beauty in the mundane, transforming everyday experiences into lyrical reflections on the human condition. Whether contemplating the passage of time or marveling at the resilience of the human spirit, McNeil's verse is infused with a sense of wonder and reverence for life's complexities.

Compositions on Compassion and Other Emotions is a captivating exploration of life and loss in all their myriad forms. Through his craftsmanship and profound insight, McNeil invites readers on a journey of self-discovery and emotional revelation. With each poem, he reminds us of the enduring power of life to transcend boundaries and illuminate even the darkest corners of the soul.

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