Woolgathering Hardcover – Nov 8 2011
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“A poet of distinction.” — The New York Times
“Smith is well attuned to the otherwordly dimension of dreams and cosmic visions. In this intimate and vaulting collection, she ushers us into the kingdom of childhood…Smith looks to family history for sources of her artistic impulses and portrays herself in adulthood as a roaming mystic, journal in hand, heart and mind open. Exultations of concentrated beauty and mystery ignite Smith’s soulful poems about the making of an artist.” — Booklist
“ ” — The Guardian
About the Author
Patti Smith is a poet, performer, visual artist, and author of the National Book Award-winning memoir Just Kids. She has twelve albums, has had numerous gallery shows, and continues to give concerts of her music and poetry. Her books include Early Work, The Coral Sea, Witt, Babel, Auguries of Innocence, Woolgathering, Land 250, Trois, and many others. She lives in New York.
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In Woolgathering, we are given a look into the creation and life of this powerhouse that delivers a glimpse of fragility and reflection. First published nearly twenty years ago, just after her 45th birthday, Woolgathering went largely unnoticed. This remastered edition supplies extended content and photos from the early life of Patti Smith, along with a further look into the icon herself.
With intertwining stories from her childhood, those from her early twenties, and the reflection back on them, we are transported into a life that could be anyone's. Smith takes the magic and unawareness that it is to be a child, and draws us into a world that is almost magical, but almost tattered at the same time, managing to write about her childhood experiences without filling in the gaps of knowledge with what she has learned as an adult. She then drifts into the mind of what it is to be in your twenties and think that the world is yours, and that every word, every decision, carries such a heavy importance with it. Flowing easily from the unawareness of childhood, to the self-absorption of young-adulthood, to the self-reflection of later life, Woolgathering is a dreamy, yet honest autobiography.
There is a quiet intensity that pulls one through the pages of this book that cannot be fully described or credited. Woolgathering is more a book of poetry in many ways, masquerading as a situational memoir. It is not a linear telling of the stories inside, as one quickly realizes that time matters less the older we get. It is more about the relation of the experiences to each other, rather than the timeline on which they may reside. In such a slim volume, there is so much feeling, urgency, and exploration that it will be read in one sitting- and then read again and again, slower each time, as one draws out their own meanings from the stories being told.
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