Refusal to Remain Invisible is Kevin J. O'Conner's fifth collection of poetry, following 2014's Separation Anxiety and Journalism, and 2015's The Imperfect Document and Quiet on the Outside….
A recurring theme in this collection is the struggle to be seen and heard when the world renders people invisible—something we are seeing a lot of in 2015. The individual poems address personal struggles of identity, current events, small moments in everyday life, and observations about memory, time, and mortality. There are also references to pop culture, the pleasures of vinho verde, and coffee—and one cat poem.
With this book, O'Conner continues in his quest to apply a straightforward approach to poetry: “Conveying emotion,” he says, “is more important to me than strict adherence to form, using more obviously ‘poetic’ language or meter, or playing with visual presentation. I prefer simplicity and economy, using only the words needed to express the thought.” The aim is to make an emotional connection with the reader: “It is that connection that lets us know that we are not alone, that other people feel as we do. It also gives what we do any lasting value it may have.”