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Circumstances Beyond Our Control: Poems
     

Circumstances Beyond Our Control: Poems

by Robert Phillips
 

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Robert Phillips is a prominent member of America's neglected "transition generation" of poets—those born in the late 1930s and early 1940s. His work has been included in many anthologies and textbooks. He gathers for his seventh full-length collection his best poems of the past six years, from dramatic monologues to personal lyrics. While most are free-verse,

Overview

Robert Phillips is a prominent member of America's neglected "transition generation" of poets—those born in the late 1930s and early 1940s. His work has been included in many anthologies and textbooks. He gathers for his seventh full-length collection his best poems of the past six years, from dramatic monologues to personal lyrics. While most are free-verse, there are also sonnets, a villanelle, a ballade, an abecedarian, found poems, prose poems, haiku, and clerihews.

Divided into three sections—"Fire and Obsession," "A Little Light Music," and "Rituals"—this new volume reveals Phillips's playfulness and good humor, his high intelligence, and his musicality.

Editorial Reviews

Isis
Patients and Healers in the High Roman Empire is extremely readable, and I would recommend it most particularly to anyone seeking a brief introduction to several of the key debates in medical history for the period: the notion of the medical marketplace; the dichotomy (or, rather, absence thereof) between temple and secular medicine; the links between the spread of empire and that of physicians, medical ideas, and pharmacological ingredients.

Review of Texas Books
An originally and consistently entertaining poet. Robert Phillips's plainspoken eloquence provides a tonic for readers who find that much contemporary poetry has little to say to them.

Phi Kappa Phi Forum
Whether admiring Phillips's exceptional craftsmanship, enjoying the humor that infiltrates even his most serious poems, or warming to the deep humaneness of his spirit, a reader feels at home in this collection, and in good company.

Houston Chronicle
A high-spirited mix of playfulness, memory and social observation.

— Fritz Lanham

Hudson Review
Phillips is a skillful poet of occasions, imitations, and pastiche, all offered up with a serious yet insouciant expression of 'I'll try this, too.'

Sun-Sentinel
Clear, direct, accessible, and frequently very funny, Robert Phillips' poems should be better known.

— Peter Schmitt

Houston Chronicle - Fritz Lanham
A high-spirited mix of playfulness, memory and social observation.

Sun-Sentinel - Peter Schmitt
Clear, direct, accessible, and frequently very funny, Robert Phillips' poems should be better known.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780801883781
Publisher:
Johns Hopkins University Press
Publication date:
03/15/2006
Series:
Johns Hopkins: Poetry and Fiction
Pages:
88
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

What People are Saying About This

Marianne Moore
All lines so veracious.

James Dickey
His work is engagingly open and accessible, his subjects painstakingly explored.

Richard Wilbur
Through all of the poems moves Mr. Phillips's inimitable voice—easy-going, spare, engaging, and inclined to comedy. Some of the richness comes from the equable telling of poignant or bitter things; it is like hearing depth charges in a calm sea.

Carolyn Kizer

There is a wry, self-deprecating intimacy and charm in Robert Phillips' poems that are not like anyone else writing today.

Meet the Author

Robert Phillips is a John and Rebecca Moores Professor at the University of Houston and literary executor of the American poets Delmore Schwartz and Karl Shapiro. His poetry has won an Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a Creative Artists' Public Service Award from New York State, and a Pushcart Prize, among others. His collection Breakdown Lane was named a Notable Book of the Year by the New York Times Book Review.

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