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Body Parts: A Collection of Poems About Aging    by Janet Cameron Hoult order for
Body Parts
by Janet Cameron Hoult
Order:  USA  Can
Outskirts, 2010 (2010)
Softcover, e-Book

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* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Janet Cameron Hoult's Body Parts is an eclectic 'Collection of Poems About Aging', whose topics range from different kinds of losses (memory, hair, hearing, glasses) to pains, pills and polyps, and generally what it's like to be elderly. Hoult's verses address the entire territory of the aging body - and mind - with wry humor.

This little book of rhymes opens with Anymore: 'I used to move and dance with ease / Now all I seem to do is wheeze'. I chuckled over The Pills: 'All the never ending pills. / Ten at breakfast, two at lunch, / At dinnertime another bunch.' And who won't relate to Gravity? 'Gravity has become our foe / Especially as old we grow. / Body parts that once were firm / Now are sagging epiderm.'

I really liked Elderly?: 'Why do the young think that we who are gray / Have nothing to add, have little to say.' And I've often mused that Time Accelerates with Age - Hoult says it well in 'For as we age, the minutes seem / to pick up speed each day / And suddenly we find that months / and years have flown away.' The collection ends on a more serious note with Sick Systems - 'For good health care / We all can share' - and Time to Die ('For I'll know when and I'll know why / The time has come for me to die.')

Janet Cameron Hoult is Professor Emerita at California State University, Los Angeles and part of the proceeds from the sale of Body Parts go to the David Cameron Fisher Memorial Scholarship established in memory of her marine biologist son. Anyone who shares the author's aging body parts will appreciate her funny poems.

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