Paul Robert Mullen’s disintegration explores the pain of separation, the regret, the longing; the way a relationship breakdown can shake the very foundations of one’s sense of self and direction in life, sense of hope and belief. These poems ache on the precipice of holding on/letting go. They are economical, terse in form, mirroring the instant, hammer-to-the-heart pain a break-up causes. Mullen’s sentences are broken, and words of lament are left suspended, alone as the feelings they convey. disintegration is a collection to behold—engrossing because Mullen envelopes the reader in the raw and deeply personal feelings that haunt him; he achieves this by creating a language for pain and sorrow that is uniquely his own: “the rust upon my heart strings / in A minor”.
There’s something about this guy and his style that I find mesmerising. I’ve always both read and enjoyed poetry since being a teenager, and I have a leaning towards free verse. This collection, like Mullens previous two, is really engaging.
You don’t expect to be confronted with the subject matter that he openly tackles in “35”. He is not scared to shock, and his poems about failed relationships, sexual encounters, cross-cultural experiences, the ups and downs of being a traveller, those brief moments of serenity… They give the ready such a 4D experience. The images are beautifully apt, too, without being cliche or contrived.
For me, this guy is a serious voice on the poetry scene. I can’t wait to hear more, and I can’t recommend “35” more highly.
This collection completely changed my view of poetry. I’ve read it over and over – it is so engaging, gritty, honest and funny. I love the images too, they compliment the poems so well. It is very readable and relatable, thoughtful, and explores many interesting themes. I’ll be buying his earlier collections too.