Stanley Park by Sapphira Olson

source: review copy
title: Stanley Park
author: Sapphira Olson  (Twitter)
published: December 23, 2019
genre: poetry

Stanley Park is a collection of 35 poems from parables author Sapphira Olson charting the story of two lovers through history as they are separated and then reunited all within the island of Stanley Park in Vancouver.

Olson weaves a beautiful and poignant narrative through a progression of emotional poetry taking the listener on a journey of hope driven by love.

Incorporating poems inspired by Squamish Nation history and legends, the collection explores themes of immortality, love, loss, the nature of consciousness, and culture.

Stanley Park itself is a beautiful 405-hectare public park that borders the downtown of Vancouver in British Columbia, Canada and is mostly surrounded by waters of Burrard Inlet and English Bay. The park has a long history and was one of the first areas to be explored in the city.

“What shall it profit you if you turn the whole world into a gasometer and lose your own souls?” (Thomas H. Mawson about Stanley Park in his 1912 address to the Canadian Club)

my thoughts:

I love reading poetry so when I had a chance to read Stanley Park I happily dove in.
This collection of 35 poems by Sapphira Olson revolves around two lovers who break up and then reunite. I enjoyed dipping in and out of this set of poetry and would go back and re-read a few lines in order to savor them fully. There are themes of nature, old legends and love flowing throughout these poems. The history of  Stanley Park in Vancouver is woven in throughout which was also a nice touch.

Among my favorites was “Ascension” , these first lines are beautiful:
“I never sought to fall in love with you;
it was just like rain
falling from a bright open sky,
water bubbling up
from a hidden stream..”

“The Journey” was another one I enjoyed because of the depth of feeling it evokes.
“I think of you and I am filled with so many thoughts
that my mind becomes a mist
in which I can no longer see clearly.
My feelings have become part of me
in ways I could never have imagined….”

This was a beautiful set of poems and I am glad I got a chance to read them. It is difficult to review and rate poetry because it is such a personal thing that comes from the heart of the poet. It really can’t be rated and each reader takes it in differently.

I found several favorites in here such as “The Everlasting Dream” and “A Land of Splendid Beauty” which was beautiful…“you are the song that I am lost in….I am the dance that beats in your heart.”

I also liked reading the author’s epilogue at the end. Special thanks to Sapphira Olson for my review copy of her lovely collection of poems. I enjoyed these very much.

Have you read this collection? What are some of your favorite poems?

Disclaimer: This review is my honest opinion. I did not receive any kind of compensation for reading and reviewing this book. I am under no obligation to write a positive review. I received my free review copy of Stanley Park via the author in exchange for my honest thoughts.

4 thoughts on “Stanley Park by Sapphira Olson

  1. Hi Naida

    I am pleased that you enjoyed your journey with one of our new contemporary British poets.

    I wanted to check out some of the poems you mentioned, however they really are rather illusive online.

    I did manage to track down just two YouTube short videos, so listened to ‘The Parable Of The Nightingale’ from her ‘Parables’ collection.

    The second clip was just a short trailer extract from your own ‘Stanley Park’ collection, but gave me a taster of just how good Sapphira’s books might be.

    I am adding them to my list and should not be able to overlook them for too long, with that lovely vibrant cover art!

    Thanks for sharing and enjoy your Sunday 🙂


    Liked by 1 person

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