- Paperback: 256 pages
- Publisher: Copper Canyon Press (Nov. 11 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1556592485
- ISBN-13: 978-1556592485
- Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 2 x 22.9 cm
- Shipping Weight: 431 g
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #851,618 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Straw for the Fire: From the Notebooks of Theodore Roethke Paperback – Nov 11 2006
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Theodore Roethke (1908-63) is long enough gone yet still fervently enough revered to be pronounced one of the great American poets. He left behind 277 notebooks. Out of the fragments entered in them, he constructed his poems, but there is more than poem fodder in them, as Roethke's former student and colleague, David Wagoner, reveals in his arrangements of some of their contents into sequences or chapters of "Poetry" and "Prose," as he modestly calls the two batches of his assemblages. Prose, verse, and lots of one-liners that are by turns comic, reflective, reactive, philosophical, and more appear in both kinds of assemblage. Those denominated poetry are primarily concerned with the stuff of lyrical meditation--the world, time, death, love, beauty, God--whereas those called prose find Roethke ruminating on his vocations as poet and teacher. In the introduction, Wagoner imparts that Roethke greatly admired Blake's "Proverbs of Hell," and, indeed, there is a Blakean brilliance of paradox and image in these jottings. A gratifying addition to Roethke's canon and to American literature. Ray Olson
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About the Author
Roethke (1908-1963) won the Pulitzer Prize in 1954 for The Waking, and received the National Book Award for Words for the Wind in 1957. He was a demanding and beloved teacher who taught at many colleges and universities, including Lafayette, Penn State, Bennington, and the University of Washington. David Wagoner was a student, friend, and colleague of Theodore Roethke's. He is the author of over a dozen books of poetry and fiction, a longtime editor at Poetry Northwest, and Professor of English at University of Washington.
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