Poetry

  • Illuminations

    Arthur Rimbaud

    i bought a used copy of the Louise Varése translation a few years ago. it’s been kicking around, never read, like a few other books of poetry. supposedly Jim Carroll is reminiscent of Rimbaud, but maybe it is his better known book A Season in Hell. this one seems so rich in allusions with a classical feel and a visionary nature.

    the plus of buying used books is finding things like this makeshift bookmark. potentially this book has traveled much further than i have.more

  • The Autobiography of Red

    Anne Carson

    after reading Anne Carson, i always have a heightened sense of awareness. this book is a “novel in verse” and much more of a story than the previous books of hers that i read. she has an incredible way of splicing time, in terms of when everything is taking place. it is set like a classical myth (and this even includes a very scholarly preface...more

  • Fear of Dreaming

    Jim Carroll

    i picked this up randomly, though i should have learned by now that picking up poetry in that manner isn’t the best approach for me. Jim Carroll also wrote The Basketball Diaries, an autobiographical...more

  • The Beauty of the Husband

    Anne Carson

    all the Anne Carson books i’d like to take out at the library are always missing from the shelf — i finally took this one out so i could stop frowning at it. as i thought, i’m not so into the story here: it’s “the story of a marriage” and throughout the characters are called “the wife” and “the husband” but other...more

  • New Addresses

    Kenneth Koch

    another recommendation from elissa, poems addressed to various things like “life” and “yes” and “the italian language” and “wars,” etc. a nice study in anthropomorphism with prying reflection....more

  • Atomic Field

    Nicholas Christopher

    i picked this up last summer when i was temping at a publishing company, and i started to read it but never finished. the book is comprised of two extended poems, one, one dated 1962 and one 1974, each made up of 45 smaller poems. the two series of images and memories and dreamlike scenarios don’t seem like solid pieces in...more

  • And Her Soul Out of Nothing

    Olena Kalytiak Davis

    undoubtedly my favorite book of poetry, though having read so little it probably means a little less than it could. though reading this, i hardly expect to find a complete work that will resonate with me as much as this. it’s calm and striking; her way of phrasing things perfectly and the sudden moments of stark understanding and images of sky and melancholy make this something to return to again and again.more

  • The Book of Questions

    Pablo Neruda

    it’s rather pleasing to read this all at once: 74 poems composed of couplets of questions (320 in all), most of which have no true answer. there are many repeating themes, like the moon and the seasons, especially autumn. some questions are more severe: What forced labor does Hitler do in hell?

    most seem more...more

  • Poems 4 a.m.

    Susan Minot

    oh, no. more rhyming poetry and about love too. at times this reminded me of marilyn hacker except that hacker has something that minot does not: certainty? only two poems were truly memorable to me (“Bulbs” and “Dawn in a Chilmark Barn”) and otherwise the...more

  • The Panther and the Lash

    Langston Hughes

    hmm. i don’t really have anything to say about this, except that i’m really not into rhyming poetry. sometimes i wonder if i’d like poetry better if it were read out loud....more

Pages