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Fox Hardcover – Oct 1 2001

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 80 pages
  • Publisher: W W Norton; 1 edition (Oct. 25 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393041662
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393041668
  • Product Dimensions: 14.7 x 1.5 x 21.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 272 g
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #4,023,123 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

From Publishers Weekly

The justly celebrated Rich (Diving into the Wreck, The Fact of a Doorframe, etc.) has been publishing verse now for over 50 years; her oeuvre has included 1950s formalism, some of the subtlest protest verse of the 1960s and broadly successful volumes in verse and prose that helped set the agenda for 1970s feminism and gay and lesbian liberation. Rich's recent style developed slowly throughout the 1990s comes to full fruition here, conveying her familiar attentions to social injustice and intense introspection with and a sometimes harsh, fragmented, versatile line whose sources include George Oppen and Anglo-Saxon accentual verse. Rich praises, commemorates and questions friends and public figures, while thinking about what political action means; lines and stanzas glide over West Coast landscape, revive or revise history, and interrogate the poet's frustration with a profligate, unjust society. "On the bare slope where we were driven," Rich insists in "Messages," "The most personal feelings became historical." One of several powerful poems for, to and about unnamed friends or mentors offers "A lighthouse keeper's ethics:/ you tend for all or none/ for this you might set your furniture on fire." With her emotional complexity, her scratched-up sonic surfaces and her strong ethical commitments, Rich has long wanted to set her readers' minds blazing: more often than not, in her new work, she succeeds. (Oct.) Forecast: Rich continues to combine a large popular following with large-scale academic attention and high-brow acclaim, on a scale almost no other poet can manage. Stronger in itself than her 1998 Midnight Salvage, this volume should get more help from Rich's recent collection of essays and interviews, Arts of the Possible. Rich's first book, A Change of World, made her the Yale Younger Poet for 1951; that book's 50th anniversary may further boost media coverage.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

One of a handful of major American poets whose every new work is a cause for excitement, Rich is as stunning in her use of skewed, penetrating language as she is implacable in her politics of liberation. Art and conviction have always mixed well in her work a real accomplishment and they continue to do so here. But her arguments are perhaps less edgy, her tone a little more malleable than in previous collections. As she declares in "Regardless," a poem about loving a man, "we'd love/ regardless of manifestoes I wrote or signed." Still, this is vigorous, engaged poetry, as exemplified by "Victory," which compares the ailing Tory Dent to "the Nike of Samothrace/ on a staircase wings in blazing/ backdraft," and the spare "Veteran's Day," which mourns humankind's violent history while observing "how the beneficiary/ of atrocities yearns toward innocence." And then there's the title poem, a telescoped look at the female identity that is at once witty and searing. Neither a departure nor a radical advancement, this is instead another lovely augmentation adding immeasurably to Rich's panoply of works. Highly recommended. Barbara Hoffert, "Library Journal"
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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