Calendars

Overview

Poetry. A Forward Magazine's Book of the Year finalist, CALENDARS' lyrics echo in the reader's ear long after the book is closed. "Annie Finch is an American original, a master of control who shows no fear of excess, and none of quietness either"?Ron Silliman. Finch's unique voice pulses through CALENDARS, singing the cycles of time that unite our lives with nature and each other. As they mark the turns in the wheel of the year, these innovative and radically traditional poems conjure a new Self, freed into a ...

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Overview

Poetry. A Forward Magazine's Book of the Year finalist, CALENDARS' lyrics echo in the reader's ear long after the book is closed. "Annie Finch is an American original, a master of control who shows no fear of excess, and none of quietness either"—Ron Silliman. Finch's unique voice pulses through CALENDARS, singing the cycles of time that unite our lives with nature and each other. As they mark the turns in the wheel of the year, these innovative and radically traditional poems conjure a new Self, freed into a reality without centers.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In her third full-length collection, Finch focuses on the cyclical and seasonal, centering on themes of birth, death, family and artistic lineage, sexuality and female spirituality. Following the poems of Eve (1997), the poetics of The Ghost of Meter, and the anthologizing of An Exaltation of Forms (2002) among other books and translation work, Finch here moves through traditional and invented forms, chants and refrains, makes addresses to poets of the past, and at times deploys an exaggerated musicality that is less archaic than rooted in obsessive repetition. In "Paravaledellentine: A Paradelle," for instance, the speaker sings, "Move me the way the seas' warm sea will spend me./ Move me the way the seas' warm sea will; spend me./ Move your sea-warm come to me; will with me; spend/ tender sounds, warning me the way of the seas, the seas." Some of the most compelling poems here explore the interplay of multiple voices; in the title poem, the voices of Demeter, Chorus, Persephone and Hades chant in alternation. Other successful poems move between a voice and an echo-a doubt, a qualification or a redirected train of thought. While poems centered on (and titled after) "The Earth Goddess and Sky God" or "The Menstrual Hut" can seem more a part of a personal cosmology than a space readers will want to approach, Finch almost always draws one in with an unnerving and utterly unexpected phrase or image, as when addressing "The Moon": "Then you are the dense everywhere that moves,/ the dark matter they haven't yet walked through?" Such moments seem to contain the full duration of this book's calendars. (June) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781932195002
  • Publisher: Tupelo Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/2003
  • Pages: 70

Meet the Author

Annie Finch is a poet, translator, and librettist, "a central figure in contemporary American poetics" (The Dictionary of Literary Biography). Her recent works include a book of poetry, Eve (Story Line, 1997); the groundbreaking anthology, An Exaltation of Forms (Michigan, 2002); a translation of The Complete Poetry and Prose of Louise Labé (University of Chicago Press, 2006); and a libretto for a new opera based on the life of poet Marina Tsvetaeva (American Opera Productions, 2003)). She is Director of the Stonecoast low-residency MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Southern Maine.

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Table of Contents

Landing Under Water, I See Roots 3
Moon 4
The Menstrual Hut 5
Letter for Emily Dickinson 6
To Vivienne Eliot 7
Watching the Oregon Whale 8
Winter Solstice Chant 11
Blue Willows 12
Name 13
Elegy for My Father 14
Final Autumn 16
Mowing 17
Forest-Falling 18
Without a Bird 19
Boothbay Harbor 20
Caribou Kitchen 21
Imbolc Chant 25
Calendars 26
A Seed for Spring Equinox 31
Interpenetrate 32
The Woman on the Beach 33
Chain of Women 34
A Carol for Carolyn 35
Faces With Poulenc 36
Ghazal for a Poetess 37
Lamia to Lycius 38
The Intellect of Woman 39
A Wedding on Earth 43
Summer Solstice Chant 49
Paravaledellentine: A Paradelle 50
Conversation 51
Two Bodies 52
A Valentine for Hands 53
The Coming Mirrors 54
Meeting Mammoth Cave, Eight Months Pregnant 55
Butterfly Lullaby 56
Belly 57
Over Dark Arches 58
Churching 59
Lammas Chant 63
Earth Goddess and Sky God 64
Iowa Barn 65
Desire for Quiet 66
Hostage Wildflowers 67
A Dance for the Inland Sea 68
The August Porch 69
Wild Yeasts 70
Chronology 72
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