SKIN Review by Lucy Rose

An absolute delight of mine is stumbling onto work that you really connect with and I must have been in the right place at the right time this weekend when I found ‘SKIN’. Today, you’ll be reading a review of ‘SKIN’ by Cira Mancuso. It’s a personal preference, but when I read poetry, I always opt to research the poet. Poetry is incredibly personal, it’s sharing a part of your soul with readers that you keep hidden and so understanding who she was as a writer was incredibly important to me, knowing I was going to review the work. 
SKIN was written by someone brave and bold beyond her years. The manuscript itself explores themes of trauma, mental health and feminism through a creative and inventive poetic landscape. I was completely enthralled by this poetry and read through it so quickly on account of just wanting to consume the words and get to the next page. This book bleeds empathy and understanding, which I think is something that’s missing from the world right now. 
The structure of the manuscript itself is unique and thought-provoking, it invites the reader to be apart of the creative process with the poet and that’s something that really spoke to me. Too much poetry is a writer telling you how to feel, this manuscript reminds of when you felt the emotion it’s exploring at any given point rather than pushing you to feel a certain way. The manuscript includes different playlists and instructions for different sections, this was a bold and inventive choice which I felt really spoke to me because of how much the creative landscape is changing. We live in a world of connection, where at the tap of a button you can follow, block, friend or talk to others and the idea that this manuscript is very much an interactive experience, I think is soul-bearing and unique. 
The thematics and poetry are nothing short of bewitching. Everything is authentically explored and raw which is another reason I think this particular poetry manuscript speaks to me more than others. You can feel Mancuso on every single page and through every single word. She is so present in the writing and that’s something that is essential to the enjoyment of this work.
The use of short-form poetry was an ideal choice for work like this, the short structure of each poem really complimented the fleeting sensation that comes with a lot of the emotions the poet explores. And in its sparseness, it packs one hell of a punch. It’s a beautiful exploration of the human experience, particularly if you identify as female, this is a journey you will understand. Mancuso has put into words, the wordless journey we go on as people. 
This is a book that I will definitely be recommending to friends and loved ones.

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