A Field Guide to the Heavens

Overview

A Field Guide to the Heavens is punctuated with the designs of science, the wondering and rapt observations of the sky made at the eyepiece of a backyard telescope. In this collection, the mystical and the mundane are threaded together to bring us more than a guide to the heavens; Gaspar offers a guide to human experience. In poems that may juxtapose the presence of Mohammed, Buddha, Augustine, George Herbert, Emily Dickinson, or Blake with a family selling their belongings from an old pickup truck or June bugs ...
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Overview

A Field Guide to the Heavens is punctuated with the designs of science, the wondering and rapt observations of the sky made at the eyepiece of a backyard telescope. In this collection, the mystical and the mundane are threaded together to bring us more than a guide to the heavens; Gaspar offers a guide to human experience. In poems that may juxtapose the presence of Mohammed, Buddha, Augustine, George Herbert, Emily Dickinson, or Blake with a family selling their belongings from an old pickup truck or June bugs beating at the poet's late-night windows, the magnitude of the fleeting human moment is weighed against themes as enduring as the stars.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Frank Gaspar has arrived, in this book, at an adult voice of startling presence and power, a voice at once humble and confident, doubting and authoritative . . . . he returns us to poetry’s perennial, inexhaustible power: the old verities of the self’s engagement with love and time, with meaning and chaos, are shaped here into something alive, something generous, selfless, and new.”—Mark Doty

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780299165246
  • Publisher: University of Wisconsin Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/1999
  • Series: Brittingham Prize in Poetry
  • Edition description: 1
  • Pages: 100
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Frank X. Gaspar is associate professor of English at Long Beach City College, Long Beach, California, and is the author of two books of poems, The Holyoke and Mass for the Grace of a Happy Death. He also recently published his first novel, Leaving Pico.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
A Field Guide to the Heavens 3
Dog Days 4
Metropolis 6
Now the Moon Is in the First Quarter 8
The Tree 9
I Work Late at My Table in Summer 11
First Epistle in June 12
July in the Street of Fevers 13
Psalms in August 14
The Lemons 16
George Herbert 17
Seven Roses 19
I See Men but They Look Like Trees Walking 21
Last Hymn to Night 22
The Fire and the Rose 27
A Spell Against Ruin 28
September Tropical 30
Among the Quadi, on the River Gran 32
The Apostle Paul Disappears into a Crowd at Corinth 34
An Ark Cast into the Flags 36
Shook Foil 38
Part of What I Mean 39
Honokaa Town, Geckos Chirping, Deep Night, No Telescope 41
Delta Scuti 42
North 43
Barnard 352 44
The Lilies of the Field 45
What Good Are the Stars 47
This Small Book of Days 53
Lines Written Against the Day This Hand Will Tremble 56
A Witness Gives His Version 57
Moon by Night 59
Nox Erat et Caelo 61
I Am Refused Entry to the Harvard Poetry Library 62
February 63
Whiskey 64
Dream Talk 66
When Lilacs 67
Kapital 68
Small Prayer for the World Without Mercy on Us 70
Fortunate Rain, Lucky Star 72
The Standard Times 73
Education by Stone 74
Confessions 75
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