Outside History: Selected Poems, 1980-1990

Outside History: Selected Poems, 1980-1990

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by Eavan Boland
     
 

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An essential volume by one of our most esteemed poets.See more details below

Overview

An essential volume by one of our most esteemed poets.

Editorial Reviews

J. D. McClatchy
“Eavan Boland is a marvelous poet, and Outside History is the best possible introduction to her work. Love and anxiety, memories and mysteries—she's woven them all into a rich verse fabric, thrown like a flowered shawl over her shoulders as she stands out under the chilling night sky, no other soul around but (for that haunting moment) the reader's own.”
David Baker - Kenyon Review
“[Boland] pursues an important, feminist revision of the history-making so often praised or inherited by MacNeice and Heaney. Not so much outside of history as counter to it, or in the process of amending it through addition, Boland has developed in her poetry what Harold Bloom might call an agonistic relationship with the paternal, natural, and often silencing history of traditional Irish poetry. . . . An attentive powerful, encouraging poet.”
Kenyon Review
[Boland] pursues an important, feminist revision of the history-making so often praised or inherited by MacNeice and Heaney. Not so much outside of history as counter to it, or in the process of amending it through addition, Boland has developed in her poetry what Harold Bloom might call an agonistic relationship with the paternal, natural, and often silencing history of traditional Irish poetry. . . . An attentive powerful, encouraging poet.— David Baker
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
With this volume Boland, an Irish poet, establishes herself as an important voice in contemporary poetry. Through close attention to the specific details of women's domestic lives, she transcends minutiae and gives shape to the larger emotions and truths of those lives. In ``Woman in Kitchen,''sic where the ``tropic of the dryer tumbling clothes / the round lunar window of the washer / . . . in a room white and quiet as a mortuary,'' she exposes the inner vitality of her subject by evoking the exterior. The theme of both the creative and the imprisoning power of myth recurs throughout. In the excellent title sequence, Boland explores the movement of women from myth to history, evoking the painful awareness implicit in any move toward self-determination: ``Out of myth into / history I move to be / part of that ordeal / whose darkness is / only now reaching me from the field.'' Her sharpened skill with language, rhythm and form permeates each poem in a collection that is a delight to ear and mind. (Dec.)
Library Journal
This is the first book that the Irish poet Boland has published in America. The poems, slackly composed, consist largely of shopworn prose clunkily parsed into lines: ``Listen. This is the noise of myth. It makes/ the same sound as shadow. Can you hear it?'' Her perspective on the world is self-referential to the point of narcissism; in one poem she informs us that she is wearing ``a denim skirt,/ a blouse blended in/ by the last light,'' in another that she was ``a nine-year-old in high fawn socks,'' in yet another that she attended ``a school where all the children wore darned worsted.'' Boland also attempts to go mythic, with occasionally risible results: ``Look at me, says the tree./ I was a woman once like you,/ full-skirted, human.''-- Frank Lepkowski, Oakland Univ. Lib., Rochester, Mich.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780393308228
Publisher:
Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date:
10/28/2001
Edition description:
(Reissued)
Pages:
152
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.50(d)

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J. D. McClatchy
Eavan Boland is a marvelous poet, and Outside History is the best possible introduction to her work. Love and anxiety, memories and mysteries—she's woven them all into a rich verse fabric, thrown like a flowered shawl over her shoulders as she stands out under the chilling night sky, no other soul around but (for that haunting moment) the reader's own.

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