'Golden' by Mickey Finn

Review by Rebecca Rijsdijk

In a world choking on social media cleanliness, Golden is a glance at the sordid underbelly which unites humanity - whether humanity likes it or not. It is a knot of painfully-raw honesty and bitter deceit, drenched in a vicious philosophy and hard to swallow half-truths. It oozes anti-poetry at a time when the art form is reduced to self-help and a ceaseless quest for innocence and purity.

Golden takes the modern expectations of poetry, the boundaries of literature, and it breaks them over itself. It is an anthology unlike any that came before it; not only was it birthed with the specific and true-to-life aim of ascertaining whether a person was alive or not, but through its spiralling journey, Golden beat the author over the head until it changed them irreversibly.

Nothing is sacred here. Nothing is spared here. It questions everything, from the ideas we have to whether we have ideas at all. It tears a hole in the world, and it asks you, reader: will you jump into that hole and let it consume you, or will you go about the rest of your days not knowing any better?

Golden is a bludgeoning portrayal of crumbling into the gutters of life while searching for the stars, only to find that the stars are blanketed by a smog that descends like the suffocating pillow of a mercy killing. It is a story of love and loss set against internal and external turmoil, a tale of self-inflicted awakening in the bone-breaking pursuit of a thousand truths. Golden is the familiar burn of disenchantment with the world we thought we knew. It is a journey we all go through, and reading it will make you feel less alone, or perhaps, if you have submerged yourself as deeply as is intended, start a revolution.

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