Sixty Odd: New Poems

Overview

     Here is the first new book of poems in more than a decade from the author so well known for her thought-provoking science fiction novels. It is also the most autobiographical of Ursula K. Le Guin's five poetry collections, taking its inspiration from the wisdom and perspective that a woman attains in her sixties. Here she is at turns wry, playful, and sharply critical, with finely observed details of her day-to-day life and moving philosophical reflections on growing older.
...
See more details below
Available through our Marketplace sellers.
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (18) from $1.99   
  • New (2) from $10.05   
  • Used (16) from $1.99   
Close
Sort by
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Note: Marketplace items are not eligible for any BN.com coupons and promotions
$10.05
Seller since 2007

Feedback rating:

(23298)

Condition:

New — never opened or used in original packaging.

Like New — packaging may have been opened. A "Like New" item is suitable to give as a gift.

Very Good — may have minor signs of wear on packaging but item works perfectly and has no damage.

Good — item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Acceptable — item is in working order but may show signs of wear such as scratches or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Used — An item that has been opened and may show signs of wear. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Refurbished — A used item that has been renewed or updated and verified to be in proper working condition. Not necessarily completed by the original manufacturer.

New
BRAND NEW

Ships from: Avenel, NJ

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
$10.15
Seller since 2009

Feedback rating:

(857)

Condition: New
1570623880 *BRAND NEW* Ships Same Day or Next!

Ships from: Springfield, VA

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Close
Sort by
Sending request ...

Overview

     Here is the first new book of poems in more than a decade from the author so well known for her thought-provoking science fiction novels. It is also the most autobiographical of Ursula K. Le Guin's five poetry collections, taking its inspiration from the wisdom and perspective that a woman attains in her sixties. Here she is at turns wry, playful, and sharply critical, with finely observed details of her day-to-day life and moving philosophical reflections on growing older.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Pamela Uschuk
Revelatory and fresh as individual images...can be, sometimes Le Guin's poetry falls a bit flat....But Le Guin fans who admire the vistas of her creative genius will forgive these momentary lapses.
Parabola
Pamela Uschuk
Revelatory and fresh as individual images...can be, sometimes Le Guin's poetry falls a bit flat....But Le Guin fans who admire the vistas of her creative genius will forgive these momentary lapses.
Parabola
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781570623882
  • Publisher: Shambhala Publications, Inc.
  • Publication date: 4/28/1999
  • Edition description: 1 ED
  • Pages: 112
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Ursula K.  Le Guin
Ursula K. Le Guin is the winner of the Hugo, Nebula, Gandalf, Kafka, and National Book Awards. She is the author of many short stories and more than fifteen novels, including The Left Hand of Darkness and The Dispossessed. She is also an honored author of children's books, poetry, and criticism.

Biography

Speculative fiction, magic realism, "slipstream" fiction -- all these terms could apply to the works of Ursula K. Le Guin. Unfortunately, none was in common use when she started writing in the early 1960s. As a young writer, Le Guin weathered seven years of rejections from editors who praised her novels' elegant prose but were puzzled by their content. At a time when the only literary fiction was realistic fiction, as Le Guin later told an interviewer for The Register-Guard in Portland, Oregon, "There just wasn't a pigeonhole for what I write."

At long last, two of her stories were accepted for publication, one at a literary journal and one at a science-fiction magazine. The literary journal paid her in copies of the journal; the science-fiction magazine paid $30. She told The Register-Guard, "I thought: 'Oooohhh! They'll call what I write science fiction, will they? And they'll pay me for it? Well, here we go!' "

Le Guin continued to write and publish stories, but her breakthrough success came with the publication of The Left Hand of Darkness in 1969. The novel, which tells of a human ambassador's encounters with the gender-changing inhabitants of a distant planet, was unusual for science fiction in that it owed more to anthropology and sociology than to the hard sciences of physics or biology. The book was lauded for its intellectual and psychological depth, as well as for its fascinating premise. "What got to me was the quality of the story-telling," wrote Frank Herbert, the author of Dune. "She's taken the mythology, psychology -- the entire creative surround -- and woven it into a jewel of a story."

Since then, Le Guin has published many novels, several volumes of short stories, and numerous poems, essays, translations, and children's books. She's won an arm's-length list of awards, including both the Hugo and Nebula Awards for The Left Hand of Darkness and The Dispossessed, and a National Book Award for The Farthest Shore. Over the years, she has created and sustained two fictional universes, populating each with dozens of characters and stories. The first universe, Ekumen, more or less fits into the science-fiction mode, with its aliens and interplanetary travel; the second, Earthsea, is a fantasy world, complete with wizards and dragons. As Margaret Atwood wrote in The New York Review of Books, "Either one would have been sufficient to establish Le Guin's reputation as a mistress of its genre; both together make one suspect that the writer has the benefit of arcane drugs or creative double-jointedness or ambidexterity."

More impressive still is the way Le Guin's books have garnered such tremendous crossover appeal. Unlike many writers of science fiction, she is regularly reviewed in mainstream publications, where her work has been praised by the likes of John Updike and Harold Bloom. But then, Le Guin has never fit comfortably into a single genre. As she said in a Science Fiction Weekly interview, "I know that I'm always called 'the sci-fi writer.' Everybody wants to stick me into that one box, while I really live in several boxes. It's probably hurt the sales of my realistic books like Searoad, because it tended to get stuck into science fiction, where browsing readers that didn't read science fiction would never see it."

Le Guin has also published a translation of Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching, a book that has influenced her life and writing since she was a teenager; she has translated fiction by Angelica Gorodischer and a volume of poems by Gabriela Mistral; and, perhaps most gratifyingly for her fans, she has returned to the imaginary realm of Earthsea. Tehanu, which appeared in 1990, was subtitled "The Last Book of Earthsea," but Le Guin found she had more to tell, and she continued with Tales from Earthsea and The Other Wind. "I thought after 'Tehanu' the story was finished, but I was wrong," she told Salon interviewer Faith L. Justice. "I've learned never to say 'never.' "

Good To Know

The "K" in Ursula K. Le Guin stands for Le Guin's maiden name, Kroeber. Her father was the anthropologist Alfred Kroeber; her mother, the writer Theodora Kroeber, is best known for the biography Ishi in Two Worlds.

Read More Show Less
    1. Hometown:
      Portland, Oregon
    1. Date of Birth:
      October 21, 1929
    2. Place of Birth:
      Berkeley, California
    1. Education:
      B.A., Radcliffe College; M.A., Columbia University, 1952
    2. Website:

Read an Excerpt

from the Preface

I've been introduced to people who said to me, with what looked like a delicious shudder of vanity, "Oh, I'm so afraid you'll put me in your next novel!"

I say, "Don't worry, I never do that," which is true; it would be cruel to say, "Don't worry, I have to compost you first." But that would be the honest answer from any writer who aspires to more than journalism (or revenge). Fiction is an imaginative art. Characters in a novel aren't reproductions, they're inventions. To invent them, novelists draw not just on their acquaintance with one person or another but on their life experience of other people and their own self-knowledge.

I do sometimes realize that I stole a character's ears from Dr. Oppenheimer, or that another snaps her handbag the way a friend of mine does, but I recognize such a trait-theft with dismay, like a melon seed that has survived the compost and comes sprouting among the pansies.

But that's fiction. What about poetry?

It seems to me that the connection of poetry with experience is more immediate and intense that that of prose, yet more oblique and mysterious-altogether more paradoxical. And that our poetry is often less inventive, more literal, than our fiction.

My poems begin in two ways (that I am aware of), which I think of as "catching" and "following." One is a desire to catch, hold, surround, describe the sight, the emotion, the vision, a passionate desire that forces the words into poetry. A longing to take hold, a longing to make sense.

Or the words begin to make a rhythm, or grow out of a rhythm, coming of themselves and following their own logic, and lead the writing hand the writer's mind to follow them-halting or racing, amazed or bewildered-wherever they go. If they make sense, it comes as a gift, a discovery.

"Catching" usually involves description, representation, and may involve or imply story-and portraiture. "Following" works by metaphor and without narrative. In the process of writing and rewriting, of course, the two processes are likely to combine; maybe in origin they are the same.

There are poems of both kinds in the first part of this book, "Circling to Descend."

In the second part, all the poems started with the longing to "catch," to hold or understand. For a few months I was impelled to write about people I had known" not in fiction, nor yet biographically, but in poetry, and therefore in some sense autobiographically. I wanted the poems to represent what these people had been to me. I wanted to reach back to them, to circle back, uniting now with then, here with there, self with other, a round dance. I think many of us dance in our minds as we grow old. Finding these people again, I felt I was catching glimpses of myself through them. That's why I call this gallery of portraits "The Mirror Gallery."

What I wrote was autobiographical but certainly not an autobiography. I couldn't choose the subjects. The memories were as self-willed as the words. I wasn't in charge. I couldn't even follow, but only wait. Only those who wished to come would come, and most of them were the dead. Some of my people wouldn't show me their face, but wore a mask; for these, and those still alive, I used invented names. Some people I hadn't thought of for years came to join this round dance, while those I loved most did not. My father and brothers are scarcely mentioned, my husband and children not at all. The selection from the past is partial, following a way of its own towards a discovery that remains obscure. Getting older we're likely to get used to following paths in the dark.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Preface
Circling to Descend 1
Start Here 3
Hexagram 45 4
Dreamwordplay 5
A Circle in a Drought 6
Redescending 7
When there aren't any 9
Rodmell 10
Read at the Award Dinner 11
For Gabriela Mistral 12
Hexagram 49 15
Four Morning Poem: Elizabeth ... 16
Four Morning Poem: The Uses of Morning 16
Four Morning Poem: Morning Service 17
Four Morning Poem: Bird at Dawn 18
Late Dusk 19
Fall 20
January 7 21
By the Canal 22
Flight 1067 to L.A. 23
Malheur Maar 24
Acorn Woodpecker 25
Infinitive 27
"The scarcity of rhinos" ... 28
On 23rd Street 30
Appropriation 31
Field Burning Debated 33
October 11, 1491 34
Lost Arrows and The Feather People 35
The Hill Yoncalla 39
A Traveler at a Lake in New England 42
The Beach Runner 43
Kate and Becca Housecleaning 44
In Berkeley 45
Entanglements 46
The Stepmother 50
Old age 51
A Blue Moon 52
Aqueduct 53
Repulse Monkey 54
Calling 55
"Will the Circle Be Unbroken?" 56
Anon 57
The Mirror Gallery 59
Epigraph 60
In the Summer Country 61
Phebe and Mimi 62
The Great Aunt 64
Friends of My Youth 68
The Fight 71
T 72
Skating 74
First 75
The Hershey Bar 76
Tony 77
Susannah 78
Jean 80
College 83
Angel 84
Graduate School 85
Bella 86
Caravel 87
Family 88
Player 89
Religious Connections 90
The Flower Painter 91
Circles 92
Joy 93
At Oakley 94
The Door 95
You, Her, I 96
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)