Midnight to Infinity – Author – Edward R Rogaishio – Book Review

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Edward R. Rogaishio writes a collection of poems, stories and thoughts in a rather unconventional genre in “Midnight to Infinity, The Humor and History of a Mischievous Artist.” Part auto-biography, part poetry, part diary, part philosophy, his voice is universally human. A sensitive, caring, loving man, with a depth of life experiences and an intrinsic appreciation of nature and beauty, Edward R. Rogaishio takes the reader into his world. A world that occupies his mind at times during the twilight of an evening when his body is tired but his thoughts are too stimulating to succumb to fatigue. A time when the unhurried events of his daily schedule allow for the freedom of his cognitive adventurism; boundless journeys into the past and ponderance of his future. A time when he is touched by his family, his ancestors, and friends – enjoying the reunions and fanciful exchanges in his mind. He thinks in a dimension where his words are often put into a literary pentameter with clever associations and rhymes – a wordsmith’s factory with thoughts going in and poetry being extruded. All this, and more, make up a robust 300 page diversity of humor and history, from indeed the mind of an artist.

Ed is a mensch, a real person with an undeniably spirited love of life. His narratives captivated me, especially his observations while traveling behind the Iron Curtain on goodwill missions of cultural exchange. Having my own personal heritage stem from Lithuania and Russia, and understanding much of the history, he shed an immense amount of clarity to my own understanding my ancestor’s plight.

If you think of his stories as a picture frame, then his poetry is his art, making his book become a masterpiece. A work of art that adorns a home library rather than a wall. Besides being an accomplished painter of which his cover abstract art of blue and white waves illustrates, Edward R. Rogaishio’s poetry has an illuminating and uplifting theme to most of it. Oddly whimsical, in a way reminiscent of the work by Ogden Nash, his poems take on clever and quite unpredictable prose, at times teasing the reader as to thinking what possibly could be his next line.

So when you consider the sheer volume of his epic quality poetry, his heart-felt stories, his observant narratives and add in a score of photographs and illustrations, you get a book – a unique book – a book of a life, the life of what all will call “a friend” once having read. To Mr. Rogaishio, I toast you with a glass of Stolichnaya in my left hand, and with my right hand pointer-finger snapping my lower jawbone down by the base of my ear by my neck, and I salute you with a Nazdarovia.

By Gary R. Sorkin