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In the Crevice of Time: New and Collected Poems

In the Crevice of Time: New and Collected Poems

by Josephine Jacobsen

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In the Crevice of Time brings together 176 new and previously published poems by one of the most accomplished and most widely acclaimed poets of our time.


In the Crevice of Time brings together 176 new and previously published poems by one of the most accomplished and most widely acclaimed poets of our time.

Editorial Reviews

American Academy of Arts Citation
Josephine Jacobsen's quietly articulated observations have the dark resonance of great art. Her spare diction combines the passionate commitment of Louise Bogan with the precision and compactness of Elizabeth Bishop and Marianne Moore. Her best work, done in her seventies and eighties, has won her almost every major poetry award.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
One turns to Jacobsen's poems not for flashy, egotistical juggling, but as to an old friend, for her dependable, philosophical voice, rich in technique and free from clich. She imagines eliminating the ``monosyllable love'' from our language in the hope that someone ``will enunciate a syllable/ of force'' to replace it. ``What small/ metaphors we set/ ourselves,'' she laments elsewhere, and in poem after poem proves this need not be the case. Her gaze is often directed outward, sighting the estranged or deformed: clowns with highly individualized sorrows, deaf-mutes watching baseball. Whatever handicaps these subjects bear don't generate pity; if anyone seems deficient it will be the reader. Because her poems don't fall into easily recognizable categories- political, confessional, nature, or even formalist poetry (though she writes well in her share of forms)-Jacobsen is seldom anthologized. Yet her work has withstood the test of time better than many of her more-often-read contemporaries from the 1940s and 1950s. Her latest poems are modern and forceful. (June)
Brings together 176 new and previously published poems (1935-1994) by the distinguished American poet who in 1994 was awarded an American Academy of the Arts Citation. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
New Criterion
The collected poems of a greatly gifted poet may not offer the suspense of a well-plotted novel, but there is still a certain drama in seeing the art of a life's work fitted between the covers of one book... The recent poems that make up the last section are some of Jacobsen's very best.

New York Times
Josephine Jacobsen's poetry... demonstrates not only scrupulous verbal craft but a kind of auditory seriousness, a preference for depth and precision over mere charm or beauty."—

Washington Post
Josephine Jacobsen's mind is exquisite and urbane, which is not to say that it has confined itself to salon conversation or academic discourse... Formal and fastidious, Jacobsen meditates on death—oh, not because she herself is aging, nothing even faintly vulgar like that—because of her apprehension of our fleshly frailty.

San Francisco Review of Books
Wry, meticulous, compassionate, she casts her diaphanous net over the widest range of subjects, from the dailiness of breakfast with the morning paper ('I spill coffee on a head of state') to the distant apocalypse when the cockroach ('he will be blind/not sterile') inherits the earth.

Parnassus: Poetry in Review
Healthful and pure, protein and green salad for the mind.


Josephine Jacobsen writes masterfully, consistently, and better every year. She has a superb narrative gift and she sketches the people of her world with originality, inventiveness, and rare intelligence.

Product Details

Johns Hopkins University Press
Publication date:
Johns Hopkins Poetry and Fiction Ser.
Product dimensions:
6.26(w) x 9.33(h) x 0.93(d)

Meet the Author

Josephine Jacobsen has published seven books of poetry, two of criticism, and three collections of short fiction. Her many awards include a 1994 Academy of the Arts citation; a 1995 nomination as a National Book Award finalist; the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize; a fellowship from the Academy of American Poets for service to poetry; and the selection of On the Island: Short Stories as one of the five nominees for the PEN-Faulkner fiction award. Other honors include a recent award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and eight inclusions of her stories in the O. Henry Prize Stories.

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