Hay: Poems

Overview

My heart is heavy. For I saw Fionnuala,

"The Gem of the Roe," "The Flower of Sweet Strabane,"

when a girl reached down into a freezer bin to bring up my double scoop of vanilla.

-"White Shoulders"

Seamus Heaney has called his colleague Paul Muldoon "one of the era's true originals." While Muldoon's previous book, The Annals of Chile, was poetry at an extreme of wordplay and formal complexity, Hay is made up of shorter, clearer lyric poems, ...

See more details below
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (22) from $1.99   
  • New (6) from $6.89   
  • Used (16) from $1.99   
Sending request ...

Overview

My heart is heavy. For I saw Fionnuala,

"The Gem of the Roe," "The Flower of Sweet Strabane,"

when a girl reached down into a freezer bin to bring up my double scoop of vanilla.

-"White Shoulders"

Seamus Heaney has called his colleague Paul Muldoon "one of the era's true originals." While Muldoon's previous book, The Annals of Chile, was poetry at an extreme of wordplay and formal complexity, Hay is made up of shorter, clearer lyric poems, retaining all of Muldoon's characteristic combination of wit and profundity but appealing to the reader in new and delightful ways. His eighth book, it is also his most inviting-full of joy in language, fascination with popular culture, and enthusiasm for the writing of poetry itself. This is the first of his books to really capture the effect of America on his poetic sensibility, which is like a magnet for impressions and the miscellany of the culture.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"His boldest and most engaging poems yet."—Michael Hofmann, The Times (London)

"Every generation has to clear a space to make itself heard, and Muldoon's way to clear a space in a tradition that includes William Butler Yeats, a visionary and urbane poet, and Patrick Kavanagh, an earthy country poet, and seamus Heaney, who some have said is a perfect fusion of the two impulses, was to write a different poetry altogether, witty, cosmopolitan, playful, and postmodern."—Robert Hass, The Washington Post Book World

"A partial formal inventory of [this book] would include a stealthy chain of sonnets, a wicked ghazal, sinewy couplets, deadpan concrete verse experiments, a kaleidoscopic ninety-part haiku journal, and, of course, all those canting half- and quarter-rhymes. . . . Crafty, ruthless, and beautiful."—Robert Polito, Bookforum

Adam Kirsch
At its best. . .Muldoon's use of the conceit can move beyond joking, producing something genuinely new and strange. . . .What makes Muldoon's poems truly distinctive is a much more total kind of strangeness, in which not just the images but the plot, diction, references, and formal scheme are so complex as to border on incomprehensibility.
New Republic
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
More than two decades ago, Seamus Heaney wrote of his former student Paul Muldoon that his "hermetic tendency" can lead him "into puzzles rather than poems." Since then, Muldoon has evolved into a kind of anti-Heaney, creating poetic puzzles of daunting erudition and fascinating complexity, while sharpening his teacher's capacious humor into a dazzling wit. If Northern Irish poets are expected to write Wordsworthian lyric verse about their rural childhoods, Muldoon instead composes allusively postmodern, cosmopolitan poetry. Having won Britain's prestigious T.S. Eliot prize for his last collection, The Annals of Chile, Muldoon (who teaches at Princeton) here continues to amaze and bewilder readers in equal measure with his bravura. "Errata" consists entirely--in the spirit of Nabokov's Pale Fire -- of a proofreader's corrections to a faulty set of galleys: "For `Steinbeck' read `Steenbeck.'/ For `ludic' read `lucid.'" Not all of Hay is so stylistically showy. "Anonymous: Myself and Pangur" is a faithful translation of an utterly charming 9th-century Irish poem drawing parallels between the craft of the scholar-poet and his white cat: "Pangur going in for the kill/ with all his customary skill/ while I, sharp-witted, swift, and sure,/ shed light on what had been obscure." And striking a more demotic note is Muldoon's verse cycle on a series of favorite rock albums, from the Rolling Stones to Nirvana, no less exuberant. As much at home in mainstream pop culture as in the obscure corners of the literary tradition, sharp-witted Muldoon both parodies and honors with panache.
Adam Kirsch
At its best. . .Muldoon's use of the conceit can move beyond joking, producing something genuinely new and strange. . . .What makes Muldoon's poems truly distinctive is a much more total kind of strangeness, in which not just the images but the plot, diction, references, and formal scheme are so complex as to border on incomprehensibility. -- The New Republic
The Village Voice
A poetic music as bizarre as a blend of the Celtic and the klezmer.
Boston Phoenix
Muldoon takes on the wild-eyed energy of a pub storyteller, fixing you with his eye as he attempts to show you the perfect logic of utter improbabilities; it makes for invigorating poetry.
Kirkus Reviews
The Irish-born Princeton professor dazzles the ear with his eighth book of verse; full of inventive rhyme and repetitions, and seamless meters, Muldoon's work resembles the monk of his poem "Anonymous": "sharp-witted, swift, and sure." A linguistic voluptuary, Muldoon sometimes leaves readers behind with his gestures to Apollinaire, and his dense Joycean patter; but his best poems ground his visionary sensibility in everyday observation: "The Mudroom" and two poems titled "The Bangle," in particular, rely on a collage of imagery and idiom, from Yiddish slang, Asian clarity, and classical allusion to the common items found in a mudroom (hubcap, extra fridge, soft drinks). Muldoon's playful wit supports one virtuoso piece after another: a bit on the famous Siamese twins, Chang and Eng ("Lag"); a mess of fractured aphorisms and proverbs ("Symposium"), and a versified errata sheet. Less successful are his calligrammes (and other visual jokes), as well as a long sequence inspired by rock records-a forced set of personal liner notes recounting memories associated with particular albums. The ninety rhymed haiku of "Hopewell Haiku" are wonderfully anecdotal and properly spare-Muldoon holds his expansive humor in check. Throughout here, he plays on his name and returns to the simple image of his title: the one thing he knows with certainty.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780374526191
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
  • Publication date: 9/28/1999
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 144
  • Sales rank: 1,261,042
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Paul Muldoon, born in Northern Ireland in 1951, lives with his wife, Jean Hanff Korelitz, and their daughter in New Jersey, where he chairs the creative writing program at Princeton University.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

The Mudroom 3
The Point 10
Nightingales 11
Plovers 12
The Bangle 13
The Plot 15
Tract 16
Rainer Maria Rilke: The Unicorn 17
White Shoulders 18
Green Gown 19
Now, Now 22
Longbones 24
Lag 26
Symposium 27
Between Takes 28
Sleeve Notes 29
Hay 50
Apple Slump 51
The Train 52
Three Deer, Mount Rose, August 1995 53
Hopewell Haiku 55
Anonymous: Myself and Pangur 74
Rainer Maria Rilke: Black Cat 76
Paunch 77
Long Finish 78
The Throwback 81
They that Wash on Thursday 82
Blissom 84
The Little Black Book 85
Errata 87
Horses 89
A Journey to Cracow 90
Aftermath 92
Wire 93
Rune 95
Third Epistle to Timothy 96
A Half Door Near Cluny 102
Burma 103
The Hug 104
White 106
The Fridge 107
The Bangle (Slight Return) 108
Acknowledgments 131
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)