Customer Reviews for

Blessing the Boats: New and Selected Poems, 1988-2000

Average Rating 4.5
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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2007


    I loved this book of provocative poems. Ms. Clifton is such a talented writer and it really shines through on her work. I was engaged in the book from beginning to end. Many of her memories brought back memories of mine and the book made me feel good.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 6, 2007

    A reviewer

    Blessing the Boats, New and Selected Poems 1988-2000, Lucille Clifton, BOA, Ltd., Rochester, NY 2000', 132 pp, offers an often dreamy whirl through nuances of life to include lustful desires of the sex, battles with breast cancer, death of a loved one, menopause, oppression and more. Her poems are feminine in perspective, but probably universally applauded. She doesn¿t insults. They read like surreal episodes from a dream, having fleeting scenes change in time and place in nanosecond flashes. Words. Words are bended and hammered into concepts seen alien, yet fitting. For example, how does one ¿hear the bright train eye¿?¿ What the hell is the bright train eye? But in the context of ¿ birthday 1999,¿ not only does it fit, it¿s clear and above all, enlightening. The same cannot be said for all of Clifton poems. Some of them includes miscues that makes them not so clear. A few poems from Boats escaped my level of sophistication. For example, ¿white lady,¿ the narrator cries to cocaine to give her a ransom so she may have her kids back. ¿ cocaine will only tell her to make her kids depend more. I thought those well taken pleas could be better be directed at the government, white supremacy, or the dealers, but not cocaine. And, in ¿poem in praise of menstruation,¿ Clifton uses metaphors that are astounding in that they sound so right even though unless you¿re in a dream state, they really don¿t make sense. For example, uses a simile of ¿blood red edge of the moon¿ ¿ the moon isn¿t red at all. A better simile might have been the sun. Or, it could be something I¿m not getting because I am a man. Perhaps that is her point, during that period, excuse the pun, the sun, the moon, they¿re all the same. Using a prose style, Clifton¿s words are defined not by Webster but by the context in which she uses them. Her words often take flight from when we¿ve known them to some far off place where she¿s taking us.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 19, 2001

    A Gifted Writer

    a fabulous collection of the best poetry of a very gifted writer, penetrating in its depth. Lucille Clifton is very special.

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