Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Liz Worth : Amphetamine Heart

Some folks say, the great Blues player Robert Johnson stepped out on the rain swept crossroads of Mississippi to make a deal with the devil. Some say, this deal of soul selling for fame gaining was eventually paid in full, and this is where Johnson’s unbelievable talent came from. I say, it came from hard work. Hours upon hours of practicing his craft with such passion there was nothing else that mattered in his world.

To me, the artist’s work is an exact reflection of the time they’ve put into it along with the sacrifices they’ve made on the road to becoming published that most people don’t see. Lack of sleep, social interaction, friends, family, and even food at times. Working jobs no one wants but the writer happily takes because it pays the rent and allows them time to write. Living among the unwanted in a rundown part of town in some dingy one room is all part of the gig.

And if for some miraculous reason you do become successful as a writer or artist you are instantly looked upon by the majority as someone who has been given an incredible gift from the heavens or in Robert’s case, you’ve simply made a deal with the devil. When really it takes years of hard work and self isolation to learn how to write while being thought of as lazy or a dreamer who will never make a living at being a writer.

Whatever the case may be, Liz Worth is someone very special to the writing world. Someone who has perfected her craft. Honed her skills in such a way that her poetic words will resonate with you long after you’ve read them. Sinking into your mind with the soft subtle imagery from a true wordsmith, but at the same time hitting you like a sledgehammer with the most honest depiction of the world around her.

She sees everything, feels everything, then masterfully punches her keys into poetry that is so tangible the reader feels as if they are in the poem themselves choking on the truth of it all. She draws the reader in so perfectly they hear the buzz of the city’s streetlights clicking off at dawn, or smell the warm scent of liquor drifting to the ceiling with the smoke from a flamed cigarette.

Liz is fearless in her writing which is very rare these days. I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again, whatever Liz writes, I’m going to read.

After reading Liz’s first book, Eleven : Eleven I had no hesitation about ordering her second book of poetry Amphetamine Heart. As my eyes combed over each line I quickly realized this was one of the best works of poetry I’ve ever read. Worth’s way with words is something truly magical. In my mind I could clearly see someone like The Motorcycle Boy from S. E. Hinton’s Book Rumble Fish, sitting back on his bike and reading Worth’s poems, then blasting down the street listening to her words play softly in his mind.
Yet I saw more than this image. Worth’s words helped me to look deep inside myself. Back to blurry nights pulling hard on the end of a bottle. Where it seemed there was no end in sight, at least one that didn’t end up in an early death. But I also saw in Amphetamine Heart the true beauty in living your life with all you have to give. Embracing the world that’s around you, and stopping to notice the good things no matter how small or insignificant it may be to others. Stop. Take the time to look if only for a moment and enjoy them.

Ernest Hemingway once said, “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.” Liz Worth has done just that with Amphetamine Heart. She has bled out all that was inside her for the world to read. This book is truly a masterpiece. A book I will read again and again.

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