Cajoncito by Elizabeth M. Castillo: Book Review

In Chile there is a flower and her name is Love

Cajoncito is a bilingual debut poetry collection by Elizabeth M. Castillo. I received a free e-ARC for a blurb and an honest review from the author. I am not a professional book reviewer but I am a poet and an avid poetry reader.

I would like to begin by saying that I was a little hesitant about reading a bilingual collection however I was completely blown away by the brilliance of this beautiful poetry collection. I read a lot of poetry on a daily basis and this is clearly one of the best poetry books I have read in a long long time.

I am going to start by speaking about the book design because that is something I personally feel really passionate about. I know most classic books are not filled with a lot of illustrations or pictures, but personally I prefer the ones that have more than just words in them. Cajoncito has a beautiful and subtle book design which compliments the personality of the entire book without taking much away from the poetry.

The poetry in this collection is brave. Yes brave, that’s the word. Elizabeth lays her heart and soul out on the pages of this book. you can feel the pain and the longing in the depth of her words. I was moved to tears when I read some of my pieces and they left a lasting impression on my heart. Her words are simple and yet intense. Some of the poems are short and poignant and deliver a profound message.

My madness, my mistake, my apologies, lover mine

There is a beautiful and intense undercurrent of sensuality in some of the love poems. Sensual poetry is not easy to write, you either can write good sensual poetry or you can’t. Most poets struggle with walking the fine line and saying just enough in their poems. One of the poems that left a deep impact on me was What More Can I Give To Love? It is a very simple and short poem, but if you look closer it talks about the deepest level of intimacy and trust in a relationship when two bodies feel like a seamless extension of each other.

Context is another poem that felt very personal to me as it talks about death and miscarriage. There is grief and the pain felt so real to me as I have been through two miscarriages myself. I was deeply moved by that piece.

Some of my other favorites from this collection:

Can I Send You My Poems, Tangled, New Start, Write To Me, Lean In, Gathering My Children To Me, Neruda And His Aching Windows, Pedacitos and I Thought Of You Today which is a brilliant poem to end the collection with.

I thought of you today and for once you didn’t have me by the throat

All in all this book is a piece of art and there are so many emotions that flush your heart and mind as you read them. If you are a poetry lover, this book is the whole package. The book is up for preorder at the moment and releases on the 29th of October 2021. Highly recommend that you add this poetry book to your collection.

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