Café Rendezvous: And Other Muses
by Gerry Fraser Bryant

"Some fall upon beautiful prose while stumbling in the dark,
While others find it carefully, with explicit memory,"

This collection contains several short prose pieces and numerous poems. It covers a variety of topics, including early rock and roll, the 9/11 bombing, roadside bombs, and the experience of visiting nightclubs. However, most of this work is romantic. Many of the pieces cover love or romantic longing, while a few focus on heartache and loss. The longest selection, from which the book’s title is derived, deals with the beginnings of a relationship. The two main characters share witty dialogue as they quickly fall for each other. It is one of the most interesting pieces, yet it ends abruptly as the relationship is just beginning. The close of the book offers a few excerpts from well-known writers, often with the author’s comments interspersed. Much of Bryant’s writing is in rhymed verse.

Those most interested in this form and in easily understood, less abstract poetry will be pleased with Bryant’s style. Although there are a few works based on loss, Bryant’s overall tone is positive and idealistic. The love poems are generally sweet and instantly comparable to the longer contents of some romantic greeting cards. There are times when the syntax of the poetry comes across as a bit awkward, but this is undoubtedly the result of conforming to the rhyme scheme selected. In essence, those who want readily accessible selections readable in brief sessions focused on tenderness and affection will be satisfied with Bryant’s buoyant outlook. Fans of love-is-in-the-air fare, although with some more poignant pieces thrown into the mix to provide contrast, may find this book to be a good fit.

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