The author, Christos Kallis, explains what he has done in this book in his Author’s Note at the beginning of the book. Among many insightful comments, he writes that he wants to leave the reader “dismantled and disarmed.” In my case, he succeeded. With each re-reading, I found myself progressively dismantled. It was a dismantling of my logical processes. I had to read the book not with my mind, but with my heart. A Knock on the Door reminded me of the wall I had constructed to protect my emotions.
These poems, like much poetry, do not necessarily make sense immediately, even heart sense, to a reader until he spends time with them, in my opinion. These are poetic expressions personal for the author, but he masterfully pulls the reader in, first with archetypes and universal contradictions, and then he splays him or her with each re-reading until nakedness feels entirely comfortable.
I was grateful for the Author’s Note. It gave me a feeling of being grounded when I might find myself lost in a particular poem. I found that I could read the Author’s Note again, and then the poem would open for me. In some cases, it opened me up.
This is a young author with a big talent. I don’t feel I am qualified to judge poetry, but I do have a sense that Christos Kallis has a life ahead full of potential to make important impacts on people, and that some of this will come from his writing. I look forward to seeing more of his work.