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The art of the poetic line

Author: James Longenbach
Publisher: Graywolf Press
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James Longenbach is the author of three poetry collections, including Draft of a Letter; five works of criticism, including The Resistance to Poetry, as well as numerous essays and reviews. He is Joseph Henry Gilmore Professor of English at the University of Rochester. "Poetry is the sound of language organized in lines." James Longenbach opens this essential book with that provocative statement. Through a range of examples—from Shakespeare and Milton to Ashbery and Glück—Longenbach describes the function of line in metered, rhymed, syllabic, and free-verse poetry. That function is sonic, he argues, and our true experience of it can only be identified in relation to other elements in a poem. Syntax and the interaction of different kinds of line endings are primary to understanding line, as is the relationship of lineated poems to prose poetry. The Art of the Poetic Line is a vital new resource by one of America's most important critics and most engaging poets. The Art of the Poetic Line is part of The Art of series, a new line of books by important authors on the craft of writing, edited by Charles Baxter. Each book examines a singular, but often assumed or neglected, issue facing the contemporary writer of fiction, nonfiction, or poetry. The Art of series means to restore the art of criticism while illuminating the art of writing. Of the series, Baxter writes, “The Art Of series is meant to restore criticism as an art, with writers examining features of their craft in lively and colorful prose.” "A much-admired academic critic and poet, Longenbach contributes to this useful new series of pocket-sized writing guides with clear, swift prose that explains how poets have thought about kinds of lines; how the line, or the idea of the line, distinguishes poetry (even prose poetry) from ordinary prose; how reference to dramatic verse (especially Shakespeare's) can help us think about verse lines on the page; and how the kinds of line he identifies—the end-stopped (punctuated) line, the parsing line (which follows a phrase's syntax), and the annotating line (which works against it)—combine to make memorable modern poems. A set of examples from William Carlos Williams demonstrate how Williams's freewheeling prose let him evolve from less interesting to more powerful versions of free verse. Passages from Marianne Moore, C.D. Wright, Emily Dickinson, Ezra Pound and Frank Bidart also receive incisive comment. No particular line, Longenbach writes, needs to be championed at the expense of other kinds . . . Useful in college and high school courses."—Publishers Weekly


The Art of Poetry

Author: Shira Wolosky
Publisher: Oxford University Press
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In The Art of Poetry, Shira Wolosky provides a dazzling introduction to an art whose emphasis on verbal music, wordplay, and dodging the merely literal makes it at once the most beguiling and most challenging of literary forms. A uniquely comprehensive, step-by-step introduction to poetic form, The Art of Poetry moves progressively from smaller units such as the word, line, and image, to larger features such as verse forms and voice. In fourteen engaging, beautifully written chapters, Wolosky explores in depth how poetry does what it does while offering brilliant readings of some of the finest lyric poetry in the English and American traditions. Both readers new to poetry and poetry veterans will be moved and enlightened as Wolosky interprets work by William Shakespeare, John Donne, William Blake, William Wordsworth, Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, Sylvia Plath, and others. The book includes a superb two-chapter discussion of the sonnet's form and history, and represents the first poetry guide to introduce gender as a basic element of analysis. In contrast to many existing guides, which focus on selected formal aspects like metrics or present definitions and examples in a handbook format, The Art of Poetry covers the full landscape of poetry's subtle art while showing readers how to comprehend a poetic text in all its dimensions. Other special features include Wolosky's consideration of historical background for the developments she discusses, and the way her book is designed to acquaint or reacquaint readers with the core of the lyric tradition in English. Lively, accessible, and original, The Art of Poetry will be a rich source of inspiration for students, general readers, and those who teach poetry.


Essays on the Art of Chaucer s Verse

Author: Alan T. Gaylord
Publisher: Routledge
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First published in 2001. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.


Lady of the Beasts

Author: Robin Morgan
Publisher: Open Road Media
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Robin Morgan’s second collection of poems is a rich tapestry of female experience, both literal and mythic Daughter, wife, mother, lover, artist, and even priestess are all here in shorter lyrics that cluster around four subjects: blood ties, activism and art, love between women, and archetypes. But Morgan surpasses the political grief and rage she delineated in Monster, her acclaimed first book of poems—especially in the four major metaphysical poems here: “The City of God,” balancing grace and despair; “Easter Island,” on the ironies of transcendence in embattled love; “The Network of the Imaginary Mother,” which became a virtual anthem of the women’s movement; and “Voices from Six Tapestries,” inspired by the famous Lady and theUnicorn weavings that hang in the Musée de Cluny in Paris. Themes of familial love and hurt, mortality, survival, and transformation inform the poems collected here as the author weaves a wise and powerful self into being. Lady of the Beasts is Robin Morgan at her most lyrical yet.


The Land of Silence

Author: May Sarton
Publisher: Open Road Media
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A splendid collection from a true master It is often in solitude that a writer begins to understand herself. This becomes evident in The Land of Silence, May Sarton’s collection of poems previously published in the New Yorker and Harper’s Magazine, as Sarton searches for solitude and tries to understand the regrets and ecstasies associated with it. Images from these poems linger in the mind’s eye: a bird, a dream. Sarton’s verse feels real, yet it represents something more. Published in 1953, the year after Sarton won the Reynolds Lyric Award of the Poetry Society of America, The Land of Silence presents a poet at peak form.


The Art of Description

Author: Mark Doty
Publisher: Graywolf Press
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"It sounds like a simple thing, to say what you see," Mark Doty begins. "But try to find words for the shades of a mottled sassafras leaf, or the reflectivity of a bay on an August morning, or the very beginnings of desire stirring in the gaze of someone looking right into your eyes . . ." Doty finds refuge in the sensory experience found in poems by Blake, Whitman, Bishop, and others. The Art of Description is an invaluable book by one of America's most revered writers and teachers.


The Art of Life

Author: Mutlu Konuk Blasing
Publisher: University of Texas Press
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Autobiographical literature especially reveals the processes by which writers convert their own historical experience into fictional form and suggests how literary forms function in life. This volume defines an original theory of autobiographical writing and provides intriguing analyses of major American works of literature. The Art of Life examines the transformation of history into literature in Walden, "Song of Myself," Henry James's Prefaces, The Education of Henry Adams, Paterson, and the poetry of Frank O'Hara. These works are approached as events in themselves and are analyzed as conversions of form and history, fiction and fact, and even aesthetics and politics. Thus the work of literature is set in the total experience of living, and the writer is seen not only as an artist but also as a person in a historical, political, and cultural environment. As well as a creator of literature, the writer is viewed as a social, psychological, and biological being. Chapters on the narcissistic economy of Walden, the mythicizing of history and personality in "Song of Myself," the self-conscious relation that makes the Prefaces of Henry James the autobiography of an artist. the comic perspective of The Education of Henry Adams, and the radical innovation of Paterson and O'Hara's poetry provide new readings of major American works. Each chapter contains some distinct critical insight which not only contributes to, but can be relished apart from, the book's overarching theoretical argument. The Art of Life is a sophisticated theoretical discussion of autobiography with rich psychological, philosophical, and cultural ramifications.


Inner Landscape

Author: May Sarton
Publisher: Open Road Media
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A strong-willed and emotional collection hidden under a well-groomed landscape of words With her debut collection of poems, Encounter in April, May Sarton made an incredible splash in the world of poetry. Her work is impossible to imitate: a mix of stately verse and depth of emotion that lurks beneath every line, creating a tantalizing, magnetically charged distance between reader and poet. With Inner Landscape, Sarton beckons us forth while eluding easy understanding, in a volume that brilliantly walks the line between enticing and satisfying.


As Does New Hampshire

Author: May Sarton
Publisher: Open Road Media
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May Sarton’s exquisitely rendered tribute to her home state Over the course of her career, May Sarton wrote on a range of topics and places in both prose and poetry, and traveled across the world in search of new subjects. There is, however, one place that she always returned to in the end: Nelson, New Hampshire. Written in honor of the town’s bicentennial, As Does New Hampshire follows the course of a year in this rural hamlet. Sarton gracefully describes the ever-present role of nature, which always reminds humans that their presence on earth is temporary. She conveys both the beauty and the difficulty of a New England winter, and the full bloom of spring and summer. Above all, though, As Does New Hampshire is a lasting tribute not only to Sarton’s home, but to the greater concept of home found in the heart of every reader.


Encounter in April

Author: May Sarton
Publisher: Open Road Media
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The debut work of a literary legend May Sarton’s career spanned sixty years and included novels, poetry, memoirs, and even children’s books, but it was poetry that provided the world’s first look at her wondrous talent. Encounter in April is a fitting starting point for readers wishing to familiarize themselves with one of the twentieth century’s most lyrical and eloquent authors. In this anthology, Sarton describes womanhood devastatingly and unforgettably, deftly matching serene imagery with powerful emotion. Her sonnets are to be savored. Encounter in April is a thesis statement for a lengthy and profound career, and Sarton’s talent is readily evident from the beginning.