The Singers I Prefer

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Overview

Trained as a musician and composer, Barter’s poems are driven by the rhythm and lyricism, punctuated with occasional dissonances that startle the reader with profound perceptions hidden within deceptively straightforward “melodies.” Whether exploring the misadventures of youth or the petty defeats of encroaching middle age, Barter evokes the bittersweet feeling of being “sad in the deep-sweet way/that gods are sad for all that will/never be.”

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Overview

Trained as a musician and composer, Barter’s poems are driven by the rhythm and lyricism, punctuated with occasional dissonances that startle the reader with profound perceptions hidden within deceptively straightforward “melodies.” Whether exploring the misadventures of youth or the petty defeats of encroaching middle age, Barter evokes the bittersweet feeling of being “sad in the deep-sweet way/that gods are sad for all that will/never be.”

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What People Are Saying

Sydney Lea
"...that indefinable gift to howl in pain at the moon even as the virtuosity and beauty of the howling indicate the player's love of life. One of the most impressive debuts I know."
Sydney Lea
“...that indefinable gift to howl in pain at the moon even as the virtuosity and beauty of the howling indicate the player’s love of life. One of the most impressive debuts I know.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780972304542
  • Publisher: Cavankerry Press
  • Publication date: 1/1/2005
  • Pages: 88
  • Product dimensions: 5.92 (w) x 8.04 (h) x 0.36 (d)

Meet the Author

Christian Barter was born and raised in rural Maine. He received a B.A. from Bates College, in music composition, and an M.F.A in Writing from Vermont College. He supervises a trail crew in Bar Harbor, Maine, doing dry stone masonry, tree work, and wild-land firefighting. Christian's poems have appeared in a number of periodicals, including The Georgia Review, North American Review, American Scholar and Notre Dame Review. He has received residency fellowships from the Kimmel Harding Nelson Foundation and the Espy Foundation.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 22, 2009

    poems based on music and exploring music

    What Barter says in the poem 'On a Beethoven Cello Sonata' could also be said about his own poems: 'The strain/that labors cadence after cadence toward/resolution, wresting its course away/from the pestering piano, arrives/only after everything is so changed/that where it meant to go is no longer/possible....' Similarly, you never know where Barter's poems are going to go. But this doesn't mean they are anarchic, or are simply pleasing or inspired gatherings of images. Like music, the poems have no reason, but rather play out intimations and ideas inhering in their animating moods, memories, and thoughts. Though Barter uses a Beethoven cello sonata in tendering something about music which also wittingly or by intuition or chance refers to his own poetry, Barter's poetry is more like Bach's music than Beethoven's. The emotional restraint and preciseness of Barter's poems makes them more like Bach's music.

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