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Imagine right at this moment if Lady Gaga found a typewriter, a paint brush, and a blank book. Except imagine that Lady Gaga didn’t make it at all and it was actually a poetry book by Bronx writer and artist Dallas Athent and illustrated by Maria Pavlovska. Yes, a bizarre opening for a book review, but a normal opening sentence wouldn’t due.
That’s because the book - Theia Mania - addresses our own delusions rooted in our past, present, and future. Everything that drives us mad or causes us to repeat stupid mistakes - like love or lust for instance - can only be explained by divine intervention. The book is divided into two epics: 1) “Degenerate Deity” and 2) “Theia Mania.” The former is filled with a family history of nobles and linage dumped in NYC where the speaker rules her own kingdom and universe, declaring, “I am a scumbag goddess….a venus rising from the rain fell to the gutter.” The latter addresses the delusions we fall for, willingly or otherwise, in our modern world. Athent’s poetry mimics the shapes of Pavlovska’s illustrations, the intervention of art on the choreography of words. Or maybe the art mimics the words. Another mystery perhaps left up to our own delusions.
The words crawl through heartbreak, go bar hopping, and climb through the strifes of youth and everything that can not be controlled by mere humans. This book is essential reading for your favorite weird girls and those who need to remember their own divine roots.
Theia Mania comes out April 30th through AntiSentiMental Society Press.