Kay Ryan’s poetry is deep without being overwhelming. Each poem is short, and even the lines within it are short – very readable and pithy. Most poems only occupy a single page and can be read several times and understood without spending a half an hour in deciphering them.
I love the way Kay Ryan plays with words and rhymes. Her poems don’t rhyme in the traditional sense, but she throws in rhyming words in unexpected places. The rhymes add emphasis; they catch the reader off guard. Some of her poems are deep and poignant. Others are rollicking and funny. My favorites take an ordinary image and relate it unexpectedly to something quite extraordinary. Here’s just a taste:
Hide and Seek
It’s hard not to jump out instead of waiting to be found. It’s hard to be alone so long and then hear someone come around. It’s like some form of skin’s developed in the air that, rather than have torn, you tear.