Euphoric Wonderland: An Eclectic Collection of Psychedelic Poetry to Stimulate the Senses and Open the Mind is quite the title for a book of poetry, intriguing enough for me to pick up based on the title alone.
We begin with a long poem with a steady beat, where creator Ryan Becker introduces us to a summary of his life and thoughts–a great introduction to this collection. Becker clearly has a theme throughout his work he wants the reader to notice, starting with the disillusionment of adolescence. The line, “Reach on up, high school corrupt is there anyone to trust?” vividly brings to mind teenagers having a rap battle behind the gym after school.
What follows are poems of different lengths, some only a couple of verses long while others take up several pages. This variety shows off Becker’s creativity–sometimes all you need to say, you can say in a few words, while other times, you just can’t help but rant for quite a while because of how passionate you are about whatever you’re ranting about. Interspersed throughout the poems are single pages of prose here and there, where Becker muses about his inspirations and how life brought him to certain points. Becker’s verses are so rhythmic that I welcome these prose breaks; while his overall rhythm works well, without breaks it would feel like I was listening to a very long song that just wouldn’t quite end. In fact, I would very much like to listen to several of these poems as songs instead of simply reading them. Some verses are so tense and full of rage that, and this is absolutely a compliment, I think they’d be more effective as lyrics screamed out by a metal band.
No beginning, no end just a journey that gets better and better as our records spin round and round and round and roundRyan Becker
As the book goes on, the poems retain their edgy beat but mellow out a bit as Becker begins reflecting on his work up to that point. The journey from beginning to end here is clear, and not something every book of poetry manages to pull off. “No beginning, no end just a journey that gets better and better as our records spin round and round and round and round”, Becker concludes, a hopeful message to readers struggling to find their place in today’s world. If you’ve been interested in delving into poetry but find that more classic works don’t quite speak to you, give Becker’s work a try. As the title suggests, you may just find that it’s opened your mind.
Disclaimer: I received an ARC from Reedsy Discovery for free and read it as a gorgeously illustrated PDF on my Acer Aspire 5 laptop. I was not paid for this review, and all opinions are my own. This review was originally written for Reedsy Discovery. The original review is here.
Title: Euphoric Wonderland: An Eclectic Collection of Psychedelic Poetry to Stimulate the Senses and Open the Mind
Author: Ryan Becker
Publication Date: 09 March 2022
Print Length: 96 pages
Marie’s Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
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