Olga Broumas Rob Colby - Essay

Rob Colby

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

It is heartening to read a young woman poet who has not joined the Erica Jong Singalong. Olga Broumas … is one—a poet of fluid, complex, and urgent voice, who attempts the elucidation of inner, primal feelings.

Most of these poems are love poems, erotic and lesbian. (p. 41)

The images ebb and flow, returning always to water as native element. With the sure skill of an ocean denizen, she leads one through the traversable waters of her loving. In and out, among the weedy shallows and dark caves of her womanhood, she finds the images for sexuality, birthing, and motherhood. She sets out to plumb unconscious domains and brings her finds to light with a deft combination of poetic musicality and the declarative tone of the spoken word. Her poems embrace a teasing and everpresent conflict: always aware of the primordial depths in which she sees her source and her continued rebirth, at the same time she struggles for the opposing modes of craft and insight to reveal and facilitate the experience. She tells us that this is her struggle as a poet, and when, in her poems, the reconciliation occurs, the poems are very good indeed. (pp. 41-2)

Unwilling to join the ranks of confessional wordmongers who assume that a primitive cacophony will do well by itself on the page, and that their private worlds need no elucidation, Broumas approaches the expression of instinctive and basic forces with at least a small...

(The entire section is 498 words.)