Date & Time Poetry Review

Claire Gretlein, Writer

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Spoken word poetry has grown in popularity over the past five years, and its style has revolutionized the genre of modern poetry. Poet Phil Kaye’s unique use of wordplay has garnered attention of poetry lovers and has helped him become a leading figure in the spoken word movement.

Kaye has been honing his poetic craft since he began writing in high school. Kaye is a National Poetry Slam Finalist, an achievement that attests to his skill. He attended Brown University, where he met some of his most influential contemporaries and collaborators, including Sarah Kay, who has written many spoken word pieces, including the sensational “When Love Arrives.”

This past September, Kaye published his first poetry compilation, titled Date & Time. A reflection on his early years of life as a Japanese American, this book presents readers with the often uncomfortable realities of being a second-generation immigrant child in the States. Kaye eloquently uses poetry to tell stories about his life, highlighting both struggles and triumphs to connect with his audience.

In the poem “Camaro” he touches on the ideas of love, and the the harsh pain of dredging up memories as a relationship fades. Family figures as the centerpiece of his poem “My Grandmothers Ballroom”, where he honors his grandmother’s long and beautiful life. The sincere love Kaye has for his family and culture lives within the hundred pages of his book. His fresh creative tone is sure to be pleasurable to all poetry lovers and new readers alike.

Whether the poem is based off of a memory, sensation, or idea, Kaye is able to transport the mind to uncharted territory, and one is able to truly sympathize with the struggles he had growing up. His skillful use of timing and storytelling create an authentic style that’s appealing to people of all backgrounds.

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