ALL THE STARS by Alexandra Psaropoulou, Book Review

Publisher: Austin Macauley

ISBN: 978 1 84963 910 1

Find the book on Amazon at

Reviewed by Alok Mishra


Life is all about finding the link between ‘self’ “and” the universe; at least, the book by Alexandra says the same. Her wonderful book of poems coupled with amazing pictures starts with an “and” and takes us to a journey of life that culminates with a verse starting with “and” as well! In short, the poetess understands that life is a strife to find solace, and we keep following that “and”.

As you turn the pages of the book, you will begin with an encounter with the celestial imagery and lines accompanying them. True, as the very first poem by Alexandra chants:

“And all the stars

are in the sky

and the waves

are lapping

and the nightbird

is singing”

These lines show the permanence and the structure of the cosmos. Things are meant to be at their proper places, we have to admit. Starts will be in the sky; waves are to be busy in lapping, and the birds will sing… what else can be beautiful for the world?

With the first stanza of the very first poem of the book, a journey starts of the poetess. The journey wanders through many phases and goes to take many turns. She looks the things and thinks ‘everything is the way/ I want it to be’ and is happy. However, there is a pain; she tries throughout the journey to ‘stop the ache/ of the longing’. Nevertheless, this very ‘ache’ is meant to be the ‘life-force’.

Decorated with beautiful images, the verse moves swiftly. Alexandra tries to cover the span of life in lines. It is so difficult, though. Many poets and writers have, but, unsuccessfully tried to shrink life in the black letters carved on white pages! However, she tries her best, and at times, presents powerful logics in her words. When she says:

“And time is going by

And you are not doing

All the things you want”

It appears that the ‘you’ of the lines become ‘we,’ and the narrator is none else but Time itself in disguise. True, no one in the world can do ‘all the things’ desired or dreamt about. We have always, or at least often, to compromise in order to move ahead in life. That ‘ache’ of ‘longing’ is eternal!

She keeps on talking about life. Philosophy, logic, truth, fallacy, fantasy, imagination and simply every element of life comes in the lines. Juxtaposed ideas do come at times in the book. For instance, at one place, the poetess tries to console the minds of readers and herself with the words of determination:

“And you know

You don’t have to compromise

Your dreams

And you know

Everything can be so easy”

The poetess reveal the secret towards the ending of the book. She hails all the luxury to the artist of the words. For Alexandra and her readers, the ‘poet’ comes to rescue them and let them show the path of victory:

“And we will be brave

And we will find the way

For the hardest struggles

To be overcome

And the poet comes

On the horse of fire

And the poet comes

With a magic sword”

To sum it up, the book ALL THE STARS is all about life, life that is a sweet-sour mixture of events. The poetess emphasizes the positive energy and makes her readers think that with a positive attitude, even ‘the hardest’ realities of life can be taken on! She has kept her words simple, yet effective with logic and embedded philosophy. The images that support the words are wonderful and makes this short book ‘of life’ powerful. The poetry of the book is for pleasure. The book is for enjoyment and merry-making of this ‘life’ that we have to live! Go for a good read and enjoy.

(Alok Mishra is the Editor-in-Chief of Ashvamegh.)