Jane Kenyon Collected Poems

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Overview

All of Jane Kenyon's published poems gathered in one definitive collection, now in paperback

Yes, long shadows go out from the bales; and yes, the soul must part from the body:
what else could it do?

--from "Twilight: After Haying"

Jane Kenyon is one of America's most prized contemporary poets. Her previous collection, Otherwise: New and ...

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Overview

All of Jane Kenyon's published poems gathered in one definitive collection, now in paperback

Yes, long shadows go out from the bales; and yes, the soul must part from the body:
what else could it do?

--from "Twilight: After Haying"

Jane Kenyon is one of America's most prized contemporary poets. Her previous collection, Otherwise: New and Selected Poems, published just after her death in 1995, has been a favorite among readers, with more than 80,000 copies in print, and is a contemporary classic.

Collected Poems assembles all of Kenyon's published poetry in one book. Included here are the complete poems found in her four previous volumes--From Room to Room, The Boat of Quiet Hours, Let Evening Come, and Constance--as well as the poems that appear in her posthumous volumes Otherwise and A Hundred White Daffodils, four poems never before published in book form, and her translations in Twenty Poems of Anna Akhmatova.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"In a just world, Otherwise--beautifully designed by Graywolf--would become a bestseller." --Michael Dirda, The Washington Post

Jon Tribble
Still, as Otherwise stands as a memorial to the writer's life, Collected Poems is a celebration of the journey the poet took in the development of that life. The new collection follows Kenyon from her first book, From Room to Room, published in 1978, through the last poem she started after her illness had advanced, "The Sick Wife." By reconstructing Kenyon's books in their published versions, Collected Poems provides a complete picture of the poet becoming more confident in her craft and expanding the ambitions of her work.
—The Washington Post
Library Journal
It's been ten years since the death of Kenyon, a beloved poet whom every reader might regard as a best friend. Published shortly after her death, Otherwise: New & Selected Poems offered the essential Kenyon. This collection adds 35 poems to give us all her works in a single setting-a powerful testimonial to the trajectory of her career. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781555974787
  • Publisher: Graywolf Press
  • Publication date: 9/4/2007
  • Pages: 368
  • Sales rank: 207,140
  • Product dimensions: 6.25 (w) x 8.85 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Jane Kenyon is the author of Otherwise: New and Selected Poems and A Hundred White Daffodils. She lived with her husband, Donald Hall, in Wilmot, New Hampshire, until her death in 1995.

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Read an Excerpt

LET EVENING COME
Let the light of late afternoon
shine through chinks in the barn, moving
up the bales as the sun moves down.
Let the cricket take up chafing
as a woman takes up her needles
and her yarn. Let evening come.
Let dew collect on the hoe abandoned
in long grass. Let the stars appear
and the moon disclose her silver horn.
Let the fox go back to its sandy den.
Let the wind die down. Let the shed
go black inside. Let evening come.
To the bottle in the ditch, to the scoop
in the oats, to air in the lung
let evening come.
Let it come, as it will, and don't
be afraid. God does not leave us
comfortless, so let evening come.
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Table of Contents

From Room to Room (1978)

1: "Under a Blue Mountain"
For the Night
Leaving Town
From Room to Room
Here
Two Days Alone
The Cold
This Morning
The Thimble
Changes
Finding a Long Gray Hair
Hanging Pictures in Nanny's Room
In Several Colors
The Clothes Pin

2: "Edges of the Map"
The Needle
My Mother
Cleaning the Closet
Ironing Grandmother's Tablecloth
The Box of Beads

3: "Colors"
At a Motel near O'Hare Airport
The First Eight Days of the Beard
Changing Light
The Socks
The Shirt
Starting Therapy
Colors
From the Back Steps
Cages

4: "Afternoon in the House"
At the Feeder
The Circle on the Grass
Falling
Afternoon in the House
Full Moon in Winter
After an Early Frost
Year Day
The Suitor
American Triptych
Now That We Live

The Boat of Quiet Hours (1986)

I: "Walking Along in Late Winter"
Evening at a Country Inn
At the Town Dump
Killing the Plants
The Painters
Back from the City
Deer Season
November Calf
The Beaver Pool in December
Apple Dropping into Deep Early Snow
Drink, Eat, Sleep
Rain in January
Depression in Winter
Bright Sun after Heavy Snow

II: "Mud Season"
The Hermit
The Pond at Dusk
High Water
Evening Sun
Summer 1890: Near the Gulf
Photograph of a Child on a Vermont Hillside
What Came to Me
Main Street: Tilton, New Hampshire
Teacher
Frost Flowers
The Sandy Hole
Depression
Sun and Moon
Whirligigs
February: Thinking of Flowers
Portrait of a Figure Near Water
Mud Season

III: "The Boat of Quiet Hours"
Thinking of Madame Bovary
April Walk
Philosophy in Warm Weather
No Steps
Wash
Inertia
Camp Evergreen
The Appointment
Sick at Summer's End
Along for a Week
The Bat
Siesta: Barbados
Trouble with Math in a One-Room Country School
The Little Boat

IV: "Things"
Song
At the Summer Solstice
Coming Home at Twilight in Late Summer
The Visit
Parents' Weekend: Camp Kenwood
Reading Late of the Death of Keats
Inpatient
Campers Leaving: Summer 1981
Travel: After a Death
Yard Sale
Siesta: Hotel Frattina
After Traveling
Twilight: After Haying
Who
Briefly It Enters, and Briefly Speaks
Things

Let Evening Come (1990)

Three Songs at the End of Summer
After the Hurricane
After Working Long on One Thing
Waking in January before Dawn
Catching Frogs
In the Grove: The Poet at Ten
The Pear
Christmas Away from Home
Taking Down the Tree
Dark Morning: Snow
Small Early Valentine
After the Dinner Party
Leaving Barbados
The Blue Bowl
The Letter
We Let the Boat Drift
Spring Changes
Insomnia
April Chores
The Clearing
Work
Private Beach
At the Spanish Steps in Rome
Waiting
Staying at Grandma's
Church Fair
A Boy Goes into the World
The Three Susans
Learning in the First Grade
At the Public Market Museum: Charleston, South Carolina
Lines for Akhmatova
Heavy Summer Rain
September Garden Party
While We Were Arguing
Dry Winter
On the Aisle
At the Winter Solstice
The Guest
Father and Son
Three Crows
Spring Snow
Ice Out
Going Away
Now Where?
Letter to Alice
After an Illness, Walking the Dog
Wash Day
Geranium
Cultural Exchange
Homesick
Summer: 6:00 a.m.
Walking Notes: Hamden, Connecticut
Last Days
Looking at Stars
At the Dime Store
Let Evening Come
With the Dog at Sunrise

Constance (1993)

I: "The Progress of a Beating Heart"
August Rain, after Haying
The Stroller
The Argument
Biscuit
Not Writing
Windfalls

II: "Tell me how to bear myself . . . "
Having It Out with Melancholy
Litter
Chrysanthemums
Climb
Back
Moving the Frame
Fear of Death Awakens Me

III: "Peonies at Dusk"
Winter Lambs
Not Here
Coats
In Memory of Jack
Insomnia at the Solstice
Peonies at Dusk
The Secret

IV: "Watch Ye, Watch Ye"
Three Small Oranges
A Portion of History
Potato
Sleepers in Jaipur
Gettysburg: July 1, 1863
Pharaoh
Otherwise
Notes from the Other Side

Last Poems in Otherwise (1996) and in A Hundred White Daffodils (1999)
Happiness
Mosaic of the Nativity: Serbia, Winter 1993
Man Eating
Man Waking
Man Sleeping
Cesarean
Surprise
No
Drawing from the Past
The Call
In the Nursing Home
How Like the Sound
Eating the Cookies
Spring Evening
Prognosis
Afternoon at MacDowell
Fat
The Way Things Are in Franklin
Dutch Interiors
Reading Aloud to My Father
Woman, Why Are You Weeping?
The Sick Wife

The Uncollected Poems
What It's Like
Indolence in Early Winter
Breakfast at the Mount Washington Hotel
At the IGA: Franklin, New Hampshire

Translations: Twenty Poems of Anna Akhmatova (1985)

Index of Poem Titles and First Lines

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2013

    Jane Kenyon is one of my favorite poets. I would compare her to

    Jane Kenyon is one of my favorite poets. I would compare her to the great modern Russian poets, and also to someone like Ruth Stone. Her poems are exquisite, heart-breaking, sexy, exact, comforting, lyrical. Really, you need to read this poet. She is absolutely exceptional. Also I believe she writes for everyone. Her language is naturally graceful, with no airs and no disguises. . 

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