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Colors Passing Through Us: Poems
     

Colors Passing Through Us: Poems

by Marge Piercy
 

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In Colors Passing Through Us, Marge Piercy is at the height of her powers, writing about what matters to her most: the lives of women, nature, Jewish ritual, love between men and women, and politics, sexual and otherwise.
Feisty and funny as always, she turns a sharp eye on the world around her, bidding an exhausted farewell to the twentieth century and

Overview

In Colors Passing Through Us, Marge Piercy is at the height of her powers, writing about what matters to her most: the lives of women, nature, Jewish ritual, love between men and women, and politics, sexual and otherwise.
Feisty and funny as always, she turns a sharp eye on the world around her, bidding an exhausted farewell to the twentieth century and singing an "electronic breakdown blues" for the twenty-first. She memorializes movingly those who, like los desaparecidos and the victims of 9/11, disappear suddenly and without a trace.
She writes an elegy for her mother, a woman who struggled with a deadening round o fhousework, washin gon Monday, ironing on Tuesday, and so on, "until stroke broke/her open." She remembers the scraps of lace, the touch of velvet, that were part of her maternal inheritance and fist aroused her sensual curiosity.
Here are paeans to the pleasures of the natural world (rosy ripe tomatoes, a mating dance of hawks) as the poet confronts her own mortality in the cycle of seasons and the eternity of the cosmos: "iam hurrying, I am running hard / toward I don't know what, / but I mean to arrive before dark." Other poems--about her grandmother's passage from Russia to the New World, or the interrupting of a Passover seder to watch a comet pass--expand on Piercy's appreciation of Jewish life that won her so much acclaim in The Art of Blessing the Day.
Colors Passing Through Us is a moving celebration of the endurance of love an dof the phenomenon of life itself--a book to treasure.

Author Biography: Marge Piercy is the author of fifteen previous books of poetry. she has also written fifteen novels, including Woman on the Edge of Time; Gone to Soldiers; He, She and It; City of Darkness, City of Light; and Three Women, her most recent, as well as a memoir titled Sleeping with Cats. Her fiction and poetry have been translated into sixteen languages. Among many honors, in 1990, she won the Golden Rose, the oldest poetry award in the country. She lives on Cape Cod with her husband, Ira Wood, the noveleis and publisher of Leapfrog Press.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Although Piercy has fun exaggerating her "bad reputation" as a militant feminist ("We take off our clothes/ and dance naked on deans' desks"), her poems can be warm and loving. She tempers 1960s politics and 1970s feminism with nostalgia for the world of her childhood, and her mother's Jewish recipes sound a lot like my grandmother's: "Did I say you add/ milk? Oh, just till it feels right." Then, veering away from sentiment, she'll remind you where she's been: "The night he wanted/ to try it standing with me upside down/ I left him hanging from the door/ and shoosh, zoomed off like a rabid bat/ to find someone who actually likes sex." A prolific author of 15 novels and 15 prior volumes of poetry, Piercy celebrates daily life on Cape Cod, where she and her husband live, with poems about gardening, cats, cooking, canning, and sex after 60. While all of these poems are eminently readable, the best are angry and funny; "Got the 21st Century Blues" ends: "I wait for the furnace man,/ Microsoft, the cable company/ wait for the propane man/ wait for the revolution/ wait for the messiah. Wait/ for a nice deep hold in the frozen ground." Piercy fans, of which there are many, will relish this collection.-Ellen Kaufman, Dewey Ballantine Law Lib., New York Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780375415371
Publisher:
Knopf Publishing Group
Publication date:
03/04/2003
Edition description:
1ST
Pages:
176
Product dimensions:
5.54(w) x 8.78(h) x 0.81(d)

Read an Excerpt

--from page 125
Rising in perilous hope
12728
What can I hold in my hands this morning
that will not flow through my fingers?
What words can I say that will catch
in your mind like burrs, chiggers that burrow?
If my touch could heal, I would lay my hands
on your bent head and bellow prayers.
If my words could change the weather
or the government or the way the world
twists and guts us, fast or slow,
what could I do but what I do now?
I fit words together and say them;
it is a given like the color of my eyes.
I hope it makes a small difference, as
I hope the drought will break and the morning
come rising out of the ocean wearing
a cloak of clean sweet mist and swirling terns.

Copyright© 2003 by Marge Piercy

Meet the Author

Marge Piercy is the author of fifteen previous books of poetry. she has also written fifteen novels, including Woman on the Edge of Time; Gone to Soldiers; He, She and It; City of Darkness, City of Light; and Three Women, her most recent, as well as a memoir titled Sleeping with Cats. Her fiction and poetry have been translated into sixteen languages. Among many honors, in 1990, she won the Golden Rose, the oldest poetry award in the country. She lives on Cape Cod with her husband, Ira Wood, the noveleis and publisher of Leapfrog Press.

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