Selected Poems

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Overview

With the publication of this book, Charles Tomlinson's edition of Williams's Selected Poems, New Directions has introduced a gathering larger and more comprehensive than the original 1963 edition.

Opening with Professor Tomlinson's superbly clear and helpful introduction this selection reflects the most up-to-date Williams scholarship. In addition to including many more pieces, Tomlinson has organized the whole in chronological order.

"It isn't what he [the poet] says that ...

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Selected Poems

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Overview

With the publication of this book, Charles Tomlinson's edition of Williams's Selected Poems, New Directions has introduced a gathering larger and more comprehensive than the original 1963 edition.

Opening with Professor Tomlinson's superbly clear and helpful introduction this selection reflects the most up-to-date Williams scholarship. In addition to including many more pieces, Tomlinson has organized the whole in chronological order.

"It isn't what he [the poet] says that counts as a work of art," Williams maintained, "it's what he makes, with such intensity of purpose that it lives with an intrinsic movement of its own to verify its authenticity."

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Editorial Reviews

Hugh Kenner
“Williams's best reader on either side of the Atlantic has been a Briton, Charles Tomlinson...”
Octavio Paz
“The greatness of a poet is not to be measured by the scale but by the intensity and perfection of his works. Also by his vivacity. Williams is the author of the most vivid poems of modern American poetry.”
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
His Selected Poems sets the violent brooding of Williams's (A Dream of Mind) early writing against the lucid equanimity of his more mature work. The poetry spans three decades and offers an outline of his development. We get only occasional glimpses of the crude brutality that characterizes the poems from Lies (1969) and I am the Bitter Name (1972) in the mostly affirmative selections from Tar (1983), Flesh and Blood (1987) and his other recent books. Early, physically explicit and jarring poems like ``Saint Sex'' lead to the more cerebral work that has come to represent his style. The poems excerpted from The Lark. The Thrush. The Starling. (1983) reinforce a reader's impression of Williams's versatility while offering a formal alternative to the lengthy, Whitmanesque lines that he appears to prefer. And, though not ground-breaking, the dozen new poems here offer a closing, microcosmic view of his career with topically and stylistically familiar work. In ``Villanelle of the Suicide's Mother,'' however, Williams unexpectedly uses a formal rhyme scheme to achieve the chilling impression of a cyclic children's song. Selected by the poet, this volume is a formidable retrospective. (Oct.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780811209588
  • Publisher: New Directions Publishing Corporation
  • Publication date: 9/28/1985
  • Series: Oxford Poets Series
  • Pages: 302
  • Sales rank: 332,608
  • Product dimensions: 7.96 (w) x 10.86 (h) x 0.85 (d)

Meet the Author

William Carlos Williams (1883–1963), author of Paterson and winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Pictures from Brueghel, is widely considered one of the greatest poets of the twentieth century. Also a short-story writer, novelist, essayist, and translator, he helped in a big way to establish modernism in America.

Charles Tomlinson read English at Queens College, Cambridge, has lived in Northern Italy and London, and has recently retired after thirty-six years of teaching at the University of Bristol. In 1993 he received the
Bennett Award for achievement in literature from The Hudson Review of New York, and in 1991 the Premio Europeo di Cittadella. He is the editor of the classic anthology The Oxford Book of Verse in English Translation. He lives in Gloucester, England.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 19, 2009

    WRONG BOOK

    The previous review doesn't refer to William Carlos Williams' Selected Poems.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 25, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 19, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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