Sadness and Happiness: Poems by Robert Pinsky

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Overview

From Sadness and Happiness: Poems by Robert Pinsky:

CEREMONY FOR ANY BEGINNING

Robert Pinsky

Against weather, and the random

Harpies--mood, circumstance, the laws

Of biography, chance, physics--

The unseasonable soul holds forth,

Eager for form as a renowned

Pedant, the emperor's man of worth,

Hereditary arbiter of manners.

Soul, one's life is one's enemy.

As the small children learn, what happens

Takes over, and what you were goes away.

They learn it in sardonic soft

Comments of the weather, when it sharpens

The hard surfaces of daylight: light

Winds, vague in direction, like blades

Lavishing their brilliant strokes

All over a wrecked house,

The nude wallpaper and the brute

Intelligence of the torn pipes.

Therefore when you marry or build

Pray to be untrue to the plain

Dominance of your own weather, how it keeps

Going even in the woods when not

A soul is there, and how it implies

Always that separate, cold

Splendidness, uncouth and unkind--

On chilly, unclouded mornings,

Torrential sunlight and moist air,

Leafage and solid bark breathing the mist.

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Editorial Reviews

The Los Angeles Times Book Review - Hugh Kenner
Remarkable. . . What [these poems] are attempting is important: nothing less than the recovery for language of a whole domain of mute and familiar experience.
Poetry - Richard Howard
The pleasures of Pinsky. . . . are the unfashionable, or at least the unfamiliar, ones of sanity, the cool entertainment of alternatives, and the conviction. . . that speech. . . is not only interesting but shares with both lyric and nonsense a certainty of resonance. . . .
From the Publisher

"Remarkable. . . What [these poems] are attempting is important: nothing less than the recovery for language of a whole domain of mute and familiar experience."--Hugh Kenner, The Los Angeles Times Book Review

"The pleasures of Pinsky. . . . are the unfashionable, or at least the unfamiliar, ones of sanity, the cool entertainment of alternatives, and the conviction. . . that speech. . . is not only interesting but shares with both lyric and nonsense a certainty of resonance. . . . "--Richard Howard, Poetry

Poetry
The pleasures of Pinsky. . . . are the unfashionable, or at least the unfamiliar, ones of sanity, the cool entertainment of alternatives, and the conviction. . . that speech. . . is not only interesting but shares with both lyric and nonsense a certainty of resonance. . . .
— Richard Howard
The Los Angeles Times Book Review
Remarkable. . . What [these poems] are attempting is important: nothing less than the recovery for language of a whole domain of mute and familiar experience.
— Hugh Kenner
The Los Angeles Times Book Review
Remarkable. . . What [these poems] are attempting is important: nothing less than the recovery for language of a whole domain of mute and familiar experience.
— Hugh Kenner
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780691013220
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press
  • Publication date: 12/1/1975
  • Series: Princeton Series of Contemporary Poets Series
  • Edition description: Reissue
  • Pages: 74
  • Product dimensions: 5.44 (w) x 8.46 (h) x 0.30 (d)

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