POETRY REVIEW – “Hysteria: A Collection of Madness” by Stephanie M. Wytovich

Horror and poetry don’t often come together in a collection as entertaining and disturbing as Stephanie M. Wytovich’s Hysteria. By turns, this is a wild romp through a cast...

Hysteria: A Collection of Madness
Stephanie M. Wytovich
2013, Raw Dog Screaming Press
ISBN: 978-1-935738-49-7, 160 pages; $13.95

Horror and poetry don’t often come together in a collection as entertaining and disturbing as Stephanie M. Wytovich’s Hysteria. By turns, this is a wild romp through a cast of unhinged minds: serial killers, violated corpses, mental patients, betrayed lovers, and suicidal lunatics play out their darkest fantasies in Wytovich’s demented verse.

Although most of the entries are quite brief, there are just over 100 poems–each piece delightfully dark and many sexy, perverse, horrible moments to be savored. So many of them in fact, that a singular complaint may be that it seems the editor gave up on any semblance of organization of the book, opting to simply deliver all of the content as one contiguous section in alphabetic order by title. Regardless, the presentation does offer an arbitrary randomness which likens it to the proverbial “box of chocolates,” allowing the reader freedom to choose how best to tackle to consumption by either dipping in and out, or selecting a predetermined order.

To illustrate, one could pick a number, for example, 73, turn to the page and sample, in this case, the title poem, “Hysteria”:

 

. . .You’re diseased, he said
But I can cure you
If you let me
He turned the lights off
Shoved
A vibrator up my cunt
And told me to
Calm down,
Told me to relax and
Let go. . .

Recommended.

 

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Sunni K Brock writes speculative fiction, poetry, nonfiction, and edits digital video. She has been published in several anthologies and periodicals, and edited the Rondo award winning documentary, The Ackermonster Chronicles!. Her strong technical background includes working for Microsoft, Adobe, and Sonic Solutions with expertise in multimedia, intelligent learning algorithms, and exploration of virtual reality and lucid dreaming. She enjoys spending her days working alongside her husband, author/filmmaker Jason V Brock, tending to their pet reptiles, cooking extravagant vegetarian meals, and aggravating friends on Facebook.
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