An Origin like Water: Collected Poems, 1967-1987 by Eavan Boland | Paperback | Barnes & Noble
An Origin like Water: Collected Poems, 1967-1987

An Origin like Water: Collected Poems, 1967-1987

by Eavan Boland
     
 

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"Readers of this work will recognize and relish the way this collection charts a life's course."—Publishers Weekly
Here, from one of our major poets, is the collected early work that has been long unavailable in this country. Included in this volume is the work from Eavan Boland's five early volumes of poetry: New Territory, The War Horse, In Her Own

Overview

"Readers of this work will recognize and relish the way this collection charts a life's course."—Publishers Weekly
Here, from one of our major poets, is the collected early work that has been long unavailable in this country. Included in this volume is the work from Eavan Boland's five early volumes of poetry: New Territory, The War Horse, In Her Own Image, Night Feed, and The Journey.
The poems from Boland's first book, New Territory, show her to be, at twenty-two, a master of formal verse reflecting Irish history and myth. This collection charts the ways in which Boland's work breaks from poetic tradition, honors it, and reinvents it. Poems like "Anorexic," "Mastectomy," and "Witching" have an intensity reminiscent of Sylvia Plath and Anne Sexton. In later poems, her subjects become more personal, sequencing Boland's life as a woman, poet, and mother. Boland writes, "I grew to understand the Irish poetic tradition only when I went into exile with it," becoming, in effect, "a displaced person / in a pastoral chaos."
This collection demonstrates how Boland's mature voice developed from the poetics of inner exile into a subtle, flexible idiom uniquely her own.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Gathered from her first five published volumes (not including the 1994 collection, In a Time of Violence), these poems mark the path described in Boland's 1995 memoir Object Lessons: The Life of a Woman Poet in Our Time. Readers of that work will recognize-and relish-the way this collection charts a life's course. Early poems, plumbing Irish legend and history, demonstrate Boland's sense of herself as part of a well-defined tradition of Irish poetry. The next selections show a shift of focus to details and topics closer to home-modern life in Ireland's cities and suburbs, her own relationships, her past and her womanhood-and a surer voice. With 1982's Night Feed, and particularly the long sequence, Domestic Interior, Boland begins to study the pattern of her life as woman, poet and mother. These themes are refined in poems from 1987's The Journey, where the poet, amid ``the usual hardcovers, half-finished cups,/ clothes piled up on an old chair,'' probes ``the silences in which are our beginnings,/ in which we have an origin like water.'' (Feb.)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780393316018
Publisher:
Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date:
06/28/1997
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
208
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.60(d)

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Meet the Author

Eavan Boland is the author of more than a dozen volumes of poetry and nonfiction. A professor and the director of the creative writing program at Stanford University, she is the winner of a Lannan Foundation Award. She lives in Stanford, California, and Dublin, Ireland.

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