Once One Discovers Love: By Caleb Delos-Santos
‘Several Perplexing Questions Following a Poetry Accomplishment’, in this poem Caleb questions his own creativity of writing poetry. He wonders whether is it common or rare for one to feel a sense of disappointment with each writing. Is it possible for one to feel an end of writing to be near, with just one significant publication? What peaks a creativity, could it sustain or head towards downfall immediately? Very aptly he writes;Amazon USA
Once One Discovers Love: By Caleb Delos-Santos
- Publisher : Cyberwit.net (January 2, 2023)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 69 pages
- ISBN-10 : 9395224428
- ISBN-13 : 978-9395224420
- Item Weight : 3.53 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.5 x 0.18 x 8.5 inches
This book is a wonderful collection of poems penned by Caleb Delos Santos. He begins with the poem titled, ‘Don’t Skip This’. In this poem Caleb gives a check of reality with respect to the world of poetry. Poetry is an art indescribable. For generations and centuries, a lot of what the civilization knows today owes to poetry. However, with the advent of technology, though there has been a spring in the rise of poetry, it has also led to false make-believe poets surfing too. This aspect is slightly painful for the actual bunch of poets and this fact has been beautifully captured by Caleb, he writes;
“… You need “identity.”
So, you sling poetry
on your Insta-story,
Don’t hide your apathy.
I know you don’t see me…
…No! Please, don’t ignore me.
For once, inspect deeply,
uncover my beauty.
feed your boredom and leave.
since I, like anything,
deserve someone who sees me.
And, if you can’t be
that “someone” for me,
stop reading poetry.”
‘Several Perplexing Questions Following a Poetry Accomplishment’, in this poem Caleb questions his own creativity of writing poetry. He wonders whether is it common or rare for one to feel a sense of disappointment with each writing. Is it possible for one to feel an end of writing to be near, with just one significant publication? What peaks a creativity, could it sustain or head towards downfall immediately? Very aptly he writes;
“…Fatalistically, is my recent victory temporarily stopping me from achieving something else of equal or even decently comparable quality? Or, does my likely soon-to-be poetry book harshly solidify my artistic peak? Will I reach higher feats? What if Destiny cruelly decides that my writing career needs to die after my one shabbily-done barelyfifty-page poetry-mess collection gets published? What if that hypothetical tragedy machine-gun-shoots me to anxiety-burning depression-churning creatively-crippling insanity?...”
In the poem ‘Music Blinds No One Today’, Caleb vividly mentions the life of young graduates and freshmen fellow. Music creates memories and some of them take us back into time, whereas some make us feel as if the world is at a standstill and we alone are moving. He charismatically pens such a grasping vision that it makes one take a trip down their own memory lane. He writes;
“… Despite my four-years-formed fine-tuned “security,”
I miss my glistening freshman vivacity.
I wish similarly invested reckless energy
still lived within me,
Love and Life are topics of eternal interest and often debated upon. Life feels lively only due to the presence of love, without it, all would be plain and white. Love, is what makes the journey of one’s life soulful and worthy. In another poem titled, ‘Beautiful Sludge’, Caleb very artistically weaves the importance of love with intense depth. He compares it to a sludge and goes on to describe the variety of its beauty. He writes;
“…Love is a beautiful sludge,
a bliss pinch, a gracious grudge…
…Life is a gorgeous corpse-heap,
clean, course, dreamed, forced, stripping, cheap.
Life and Love are everything,
which is dumb but encouraging.
I can be dirty royalty.
I can defeat “reality.”
Like them, I can smite “sanity.”
Like Life, Love, and sludge, I can be beauty.”
In the poem, ‘I love the way you dance’, Caleb has composed a poem as vigorous as dance. Dance is a part of an active fun filled life. It is a natural interest, of every human to sway to the notes of a lovely music and make memories. In this poem, Caleb mentions how is swept off his feet every time he sees his love dance. He writes;
“…You never nap. You grip
my wrists and sway. I slip
but never miss your glance.
I love the way you dance.”
Worshipping the God we love, is a sacred aspect. It differs individually and is personal too. In one of his poem titled, ‘Watching Worshiping While Churching’, Caleb notes down the elements of worshipping put up on the stage at churches, in a very crisp manner he distinguishes the phenomenon of the on-stage and off-stage worship. He writes;
“….They march around, stretch their arms, and proclaim
God’s name as they distract with vocal range.
My Love does not praise God like that, like fame
is her aim. No, she does not take the stage.
Instead, she gently sways, whispers God’s name
and finds God in the church’s back. Each page
of her notes sings her passion. The blind claim
she has restraints, but she has no such cage….”
Loving our soulmate to the depth of ability gives us joy and happiness. Being there for them, caring for them and building memories along is a bliss. In the poem titled, ‘Star Gazing on Our One Year and One Week Anniversary,’ Caleb very cosily records his feelings for his love while celebrating their anniversary. He writes;
“….As that inspiring light engulfed my eye,
converting me to your glowing psyche,
I thought on future years below the sky,
realizing you will touch each memory.
The shine inside your eye ignites my view
and shows me why I will always love you.”
‘Pleading for Critique on a Monologue’, in this poem Caleb addresses the disappointment he feels when he receives less of critique on a monologue. He seeks for such critique which voices the true opinion for a more refined art work. He writes;
“…. Why can’t you tell me what needs work and why?
Please, think, “what lies behind each scream and cry?”
Perceive each line and choice delivery,
and voice each theme and subtlety you see.
Without the truth, I won’t perfect my art.
Without your help, I won’t know where to start.”
As clear and complex the life is, so are its fears and facts. Ups and downs forever mark, life as it is. In a very polite manner, Caleb in his poem titled, ‘Hey, You’, has drafted a very minute observation of his with respect to life, and very charmingly, he compares it to be nothing, but a breeze. He writes;
“….So, calm down,
Drop your frown.
Forget your Crown,
And maybe even
Clown-up your town.
But most of all,
Life isn’t only
A storm of unholy strife and flaws.
It’s also a breeze…”
In the poem titled, ‘Tongue-Twister-ing’, Caleb has drafted, with love, his passion for poetry in the form of alliteration bagged tongue twisters. He writes;
“…. Clams commemorate clean cream cans’ complexity.
I scream. You scream. We all scream Poetry
Disguised as Ice Cream…”
What is today, may not be so tomorrow. This is a reality that cannot be denied. The dilemma of now and later is eternally present in one’s life. How one chooses to navigate through this gate is a joy in itself. In one such poem titled, ‘Hmmm’, Caleb recounts the worlds of today vs tomorrow and what is the significance of present in a very intelligible way. He writes;
“…Tomorrow could be bleak.
Today could be my peak.
Tomorrow I could die.
Today could be a lie.
But now, I will enjoy
This lively time of love.
I will laugh and annoy,
While in the light above.”
In the poem, ‘To My First-Grade Girlfriend’, Caleb revisits his first-grade love and very heartily thanks his first crush in a cute effort. He writes;
“…. These days, in adulthood, they remind me
to breathe gleefully
even when dealing
with bigger assholes than little-me.
Thank you, and please never stop smiling….”
Sibling bond is a sphere in itself. Having one is a blessing, a gift. In another poem titled, ‘Dear Brother’, Caleb appreciatingly thanks his brother for being there for him in times of grey, and he has deep gratitude of his wise advise with respect to life. He notes;
“…. “Keep your door open.”
Although you meant it literally, that phrase
consistently returns to me on days
when failure paves my paths. When struggles sink
My chasing feet, it cheers me up to think,
“Keep your door open,”
stay open to whatever God has planned,
including courses you don’t understand.
You taught me to accept this test called Life
and welcome any wages, change, or strife.
“Keep your door open.”….”
In the poem titled, ‘The Eyes of the Beholder’, Caleb very translucently brings out the affectionate relationship of the master and a pet. He writes;
“…She’s little yet scowls fiercely and stands tall.
Her fur is a grey rainbow of all shades.
But her face is a dark and withered patch,
which carries emerald eyes. Those searchlights aid
Her gaze and make all, but me, fear a scratch.
She could have struck me, but she purred instead.
For in her awesome eyes, I am her friend.”
Summer is a time filled with the glow of sun and loads of fun. Break in this period is something everyone looks forward to, be it the young or the old. Describing about the end of one such summer break, Caleb in his poem titled, ‘Here, Here’, has romantically carved the delicate clinging one has for the break to stretch longer, though not possible, for goodbye awaits. He writes;
“…But, that time is done,
Floating in the sun.
Now comes those long days,
Where rhymes die in vain.
Time to say goodbye,
With a grin and sigh,
To the time above,
To the break I loved.”
In the modern times, making one’s presence felt is a challenging task. In the ever fast paced life, man is running and constantly on toes to make himself heard and acknowledged. In the poem titled, ‘Presence’, Caleb very craftily inscribes the essence of presence. He writes;
“…“Know that I’m alive,”
I scream and they hear.
“My words must survive.”
Their death is my fear.
We all need that one,
Who rescues our soul,
Who, when we are done,
Takes back what death stole.”
Being a poet, doesn’t come easy. Feelings and experiences get capsuled in the depths of brevity, through the channel of words, in the form of poetry. In his concluding poem for the collection, titled, ‘Do you have a minute?’, Caleb leaves a heart-warming note to his readers as he thanks them for their time and wishes the best for their future. He writes;
“…. No matter what invades your day or life,
I know you’ll conquer it. Do you know why?
Because you try. You read my poem through.
You have the gall to fight despite your strife,
which means one day, if not today, you’ll fly.
Goodbye, sweet reader. I believe in you.”
Having read this collection of Caleb Delos Santos, I have the feel of having time travelled along with the him into his lanes of memory. It is definitely worth one’s time, a recommended read for sure. Happy Reading!
-By Gouri Sattigeri