Review of A Sparrow Stirs its Wings, Rachel Finch by Kristiana Reed

From the moment Sudden Denouement Publishing announced the publication of Rachel Finch’s debut poetry collection, I could not wait to read it. Finch made a brave and bold entrance onto Blood into Ink, with ignition pieces like Girls are not for Beating (pg.35). I was hooked by her ability to sing fire with a bloody mouth.

A Sparrow Stirs its Wings houses this spirit of fight and flight. Flight not from fear but from the space she has shaped to soar. The structure of the collection reminds me of Alfa’s Silent Squall except Finch begins with the girl crossing her heart and hoping to die, walking on eggshells (pg.19), and ends as a woman who recognises strength and hope in her reflection:

I did not notice the growth, until I had grown,
I had not seen myself changing, becoming,
until the woman I forged reflected my gaze
and held my stare with no shame.’

  • Hold the Stare
  • In fact, I would even say Finch’s sparrow does more than stir its wings – it unfurls them in the morning sun and defies the laws of gravity. This debut collection is more than just honest, beautifully brutal storytelling. Finch has created a collection the reader will feel compelled to return to, time and time again. Moon Breathing makes me fall in love, Heal is the advice I need imprinted on my palm and Still Smouldering never fails to provoke a visceral reaction:

    ‘I was reborn a dragon feasting on the fire in my belly, lit with milk teeth in my mouth’

    Finch’s voice has found a home, in these pages and in my chest. She touches her readers. She tells the truth and explores hers. She leaves you with the following words:

    ‘You are the smell of rain before it hits the soil.’

    And you can’t help but believe them.

    Image courtesy of Alfa

    You can read more of Kristiana’s writing at My Screaming Twenties



    Melody Lee: Morning Reflections

    Sitting on my back porch

    with my pal, my fourteen year old pooch,

    enjoying fresh morning air, hot coffee and the whiff of jasmine

    thriving on a nearby trellis. I am almost in a trance

    from the peacefulness that only these early mornings offer.

    Red cardinals and other birds, maybe quails or mourning doves, I am not sure exactly,

    entertain me. So sweet they sing, then fly away. Much like love

    that comes but doesn’t stay.


    Beside me, Mary Oliver’s “Devotions,” and a cellphone I am

    determined not to touch.

    Although this euphoria won’t last as the sun begins to dominate the sky

    causing heat and humidity to steal the moment,

    it is perfect here now, in the early hours of July.

    And I am getting lost in the solitude and simplicity of dawn.

    Looking, listening, observing, as poets often do.


    Red cardinals continue to appear, and I wonder

    if my father and my brother and all the kindred souls

    I have lost in my life are making grand gestures.

    Silly I know, but still, I imagine they are watching me

    reassuring me they are not only fine, but together, laughing,

    loving, playing gleefully, in the dimension where their spirits now reside.

    © Melody Lee

    Written July 7, 2018

    Melody is the author of Moon Gypsy and Vine: Book of Poetry. Available at

    Indie Blu(e) is Hosting Its First Facebook Author Takeover event


    Indie Blu(e) is holding its first Facebook Author Takeover event on Monday, July 23rd from 2 to 7 pm EST.

    We are offering 10 30-minute slots for Indie Authors to “takeover” the event page and promote the hell out of their titles and network with new readers and other Indie Authors. Involvement is pretty simple- all participating authors promote the event on their own social media and encourage their followers to attend. Each author gets a 30-minute slot where they get to post exclusively on the event page and interact with the attendees. All participating authors are encouraged to stop by periodically throughout the event to meet and support the other authors. If you would like to claim a remaining 30-minute slot, please email Kindra and Christine at We will provide additional information about the event and language to help advertise it.

    Indie Blu(e) Welcomes Alfa

    Alfa would paint the world in hues of turquoise if she could. Unapologetic about her realistic take on heartache, she writes to let her readers know they are not alone in their pain. Her four children and three granddaughters, the stars of her life, were the catalysts that pushed her to force her words and her smile on the world after a lifetime of depression and anxiety. She wanted to leave something behind for them, a legacy, proof of existence, and proof that pain can be transformed into beautiful inspiration.

    Alfa holds degrees in English Literature as well as Radiologic Sciences. She is a retired medical professional who spent most of her years in Radiology, most specifically Radiation Therapy. She credits her ability to express painful life experiences from studying the human body from the inside out.

    Atticus and Bookish Magazine named one of her most popular writings “Heartache wasn’t my intention… love was” as one of the most tattooable quotes. Her words have been shared countless times by celebrities in newspaper articles and reshared on their personal accounts across social media. Bustle Magazine listed her as one of 17 poets you should follow. Your Tango and The Odyssey Online have devoted articles to her poetry. On World Poetry Day, The Hindustan Times ran a full-page article in their newspaper (in print and online) on social media poetry, highlighting the 4 front runners of modern-day verse. Alfa was chosen to be interviewed alongside Tyler Knott-Gregson, R.M. Drake, and Christopher Poindexter.

    She is best known for sharing her writing via her Facebook page and through her Instagram account. She also co-runs a group on Facebook Poets, Poetry, and Publishing that she established to create an environment that supports poets and the struggles of self-publishing.

    She has three books of poetry published through her company AlfaWorldWide, LLC. Her debut book Abandoned Breaths was an Amazon bestseller and received five 5-star reviews from Readers Favorite.

    She has two more books of poems that will be published August and October 2018 through St. Martin’s Press and Castle Point Books:  I Find You in the Darkness and Amid Thirsty Vines. They are available for preorder on Amazon and through all bookstores now.

    When not writing, Alfa is most likely indulging in iced tea, feet up, relaxing on her wide-planked porch in Louisville, Kentucky or painting an upcycled furniture piece a fabulous shade of turquoise.

    You can connect with Alfa at:

    Amazon Author Central

    Published Works

    Available on

    abandoned-breaths large

    Abandoned Breaths is the debut poetic collection from Alfa. Between these pages she has gathered the warehouses of the unsaid and weaved together the voices that have remained silent in our heartbroken hotels. All the abandoned breaths that we hold on to after serving time in heart warfare never really go away. They cling to dusty shelves, tucked into darken chambers among past wreckage; longing to be given life. She has cleaned house and opened musty windows, letting pulsing words breathe and transform into poetic release. The focus of these writings is to give the heart and soul permission to ache after love and loss. The author is unapologetic about her realistic take on heartache and grieving.

    She touches on the past, trying to make sense of her experiences, to move forward. This book is filled with timeless and vintage feeling poetry.

    It will touch every individual that reads it -as we have all experienced heartache throughout life… no matter the age group.

    ebook cover SILENT S large

    Expanding upon the writings of her bestselling book Abandoned Breaths, Alfa shares poignant poetry, quotes, and poetic prose, that delve deeper into how the story all began. “You will feel a trembling in your soul, and out of instinct you will pray to silence it. But do this for me… Do this for you. Quake sweet woman, quake.”

    Kristiana Reed Reviews Alfa’s Silent Squall

    Bouquet Large

    Bouquets: Letting Them Go is a small chapbook of inspirational and heartfelt poetry and prose, geared towards the hearts of women who have experienced pain. Within these pages Alfa emphasizes the strength that is derived from helping others while in the midst of personal pain, heartache, and loss.

    I find You

    Available for Pre-order Release Date: August 14, 2018

    Soul connection. Love. Heartbreak. Alfa knows them all, and I Find You in the Darkness will lead you down her twisting paths of passion and pain with the poetry that has spoken to hundreds of thousands of people on Instagram and Facebook. Find your truest self revealed through Alfa’s carefully chosen words and discover the love you’ve been waiting for. This volume belongs in the collection of every modern poetry fan.

    Amid thirst vines large

    Available for Pre-order Release Date: October 9, 2018

    Themes of self-discovery, tending the garden of the soul, and nurturing yourself into blossom, Amid Thirsty Vines by Instagram poetry star Alfa is the collection you need to feel the power of the beautiful flowers within you, and to find the love you deserve. This volume belongs in the collection of every modern poetry fan.

    Facebook Author Take-over Event

    Indie Blu(e) is holding its first Facebook Author Take-over event on Monday, July 23rd from 2 to 7 pm EST.

    We are offering 10 30-minute slots for Indie Authors to “take-over” the event page and promote the hell out of their titles and network with new readers and other Indie Authors. You must make a commitment to promoting the event on your own social media and encouraging your followers to attend. You must be available to post on the event page and to interact with the attendees during your 30-minute slot. It would be even more awesome if you stopped by periodically through the event to meet and support the other authors. If you would like to sign-up for a 30-minute slot, please email us at