Compass is a short collection of poems by Erik Hansen. My favorite poem is "C.G. Jung is Dead". The title is a reference to psychologist Carl Jung. The main idea behind Jung's work is that individuals possess an unconscious mind where memories are kept. This poem is about memories of certain historical events of the last quarter century. Hansen evokes images of the Berlin Wall coming down and violence of apartheid in South Africa. This is a moving and powefrul poem. "Storm Clouds Over Elsinore" is a reference to Shakespeare's play "Hamlet". The play and the poem is about a son reflecting over the death of his father. My father is very much alive, but this poem makes reflect on how much I have in common with my father. Hush is a poem about the art of hunting. Hansen's perceptive on hunting is what makes this poem interesting. According to this poem, hunting involves testing a person's patience. It is an activity that requires stealth and precision. It is also an activity that takes a physical toll on the body. This is a fascinating poem with great imagery. "Compass, Swallow, Stars" is a romantic poem about being separated from a loved one and longing to return to them. "Daughter" is a poem about the admiration and love that a father can have for his daughter. The message of this poem is that children are sources of boundless creativity. I like the sentiment of this poem very much. "Oxford" is a poem about how two people fall in love by sharing a bus ride home and spending time alone together. Erik Hansen's poems are diverse in theme. I have never read a poem about the passing of a parent or about hunting. I like his creative writing style very much. I have a greater appreciation of poetry because of Erik Hansen.
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