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As Ever: Selected Poems
     

As Ever: Selected Poems

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by Joanne Kyger, David Meltzer (Introduction)
 

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This collection of Joanne Kyger's work reveals her as one of the major experimenters, hybridizers, and visionaries of poetry. Kyger is a poet of place, with a strong voice-delicate, graceful, and never wasteful; her poems explore themes of friendship, love, community, and morality and draw on Native American myth as well as Asian religion and philosophy.

Overview

This collection of Joanne Kyger's work reveals her as one of the major experimenters, hybridizers, and visionaries of poetry. Kyger is a poet of place, with a strong voice-delicate, graceful, and never wasteful; her poems explore themes of friendship, love, community, and morality and draw on Native American myth as well as Asian religion and philosophy. Kyger's love for poetry manifests itself in a grander scheme of consciousness-expansion and lesson, but always in the realm of the everyday. Edited with a foreword by Michael Rothenberg, and with an introduction by poet David Meltzer, this book is a marvelous overview of a wonderfully challenging and important poet.

Editorial Reviews

Stephen Whited
Writing in the American Buddhist traditions of Philip Whalen, Lew Welch and Gary Snyder (once her husband), Kyger has spent some forty years exploring Asian poetics, indulging and reveling in a collage of images and sounds. Her most prevalent form is the daybook, or journal entry, which can be a mixed bag of tricks. The worst lines are merely banal, while the best ones offer a visionary conviction, deeply informed by attentive and disciplined observation. However, even the seemingly empty lines faithfully celebrate life's many pleasant accidents because, as the author reminds us, "The real state is called golden / where things are exactly what they are." It's no surprise, then, that in this kind of poetry few poems can stand alone; one must read the whole book to get to the golden state.
Publishers Weekly
"Just a little bit does the magic" writes Kyger halfway into her belated, ecstatic debut on the national stage with a large house. Sharing, with poets such as Philip Whalen and David Meltzer, a love of William Carlos Williams and Zen Buddhism, Kyger patiently and confidently navigates her present-tense diarist lyric as it moves across the page. A Bolinas neighbor of Richard Brautigan, she's capable of hippie dizziness that soars to populist heights: "Everybody practices magic whether they know it or not Oh I'm worn out just watching the cats lick their fur." But where her more beat-influenced colleagues would compensate for their lighter moments with wrenching despair, Kyger opts instead for level-headed surprises: "Man get relaxed Woman get permanent." Though formalists may object to her apparent artlessness, Kyger's obsession for detail draws on a passionate intelligence that is seldom trivial. In fact, it's her genius for moment-by-moment description that provokes her to modesty, in opposition to the completist's mania: "But why does he want to do that, write down all the road signs from here to the east coast." While many writers have spoken of their work as one continuous project, Kyger's oeuvre actually holds together in this selection from her 20-plus books; throughout, her prosody, both aural and visual, is pitch perfect. (Aug.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780142001127
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
05/28/2002
Series:
Penguin Poets Series
Pages:
336
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

Meet the Author

Joanne Kyger comes out of a West Coast School of writers that included Gary Snyder, Philip Whalen, Jack Spicer, and Richard Brautigan. She has traveled extensively in Japan and India and has maintained a lifelong interest in Buddhism. She is the author of more than twenty-five books and broadsides.

David Meltzer has published numerous works of poetry, fiction, and collections of essays. He has also released four albums of recordings on the Vanguard and Capitol labels.

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As Ever: Selected Poems 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love poems really good read this:))