Stained Glassby Rosanna Warren
“Stained Glass is a distinguished and elegiac book: somber, frequently bitter, but always invested with an authentic, quite marvelous aesthetic dignity. It marks the emergence into highly individual voice of an important poet of the eminence of the late May Swenson, beyond the achievement of all but a double handful of living American poets. Some of the… See more details below
“Stained Glass is a distinguished and elegiac book: somber, frequently bitter, but always invested with an authentic, quite marvelous aesthetic dignity. It marks the emergence into highly individual voice of an important poet of the eminence of the late May Swenson, beyond the achievement of all but a double handful of living American poets. Some of the poems—‘Season Due,’ ‘Science Lessons,’ most of all, ‘The Broken Pot’—are worthy of canonization. —Harold Bloom
Rosanna Warren's first collection of poetry, Each Leaf Shines Separate, announced the emergence of a fresh voice in contemporary American poetry and earned praise from John Hollander, Richard Eberhart, and Mark Strand. Now, in her second book, Rosanna Warren has fulfilled her promise. In Stained Glass she continues to examine, as John Hollander said of her first book, "the relation of art to nature, exploring the ultimate naturalness of the world of picture, and reading tenderly and shrewdly the forms of fable in which reality presents itself to the passionate gaze." Yet in this volume the poems are more personal and intimate—they possess an emotional depth that extends the earlier work. Stained Glass is a book of mourning. It begins with an echo of Milton's Lycidas and concludes with an evocation of Iliad XXIV; in its course it touches on many scenes of loss, personal and impersonal. In the voice of an Eskimo mother, in a Parisian market scene, in brilliant translations of poems by Max Jacob and Pierre Reverdy, to the more intimate elegies, the human drama unfolds within the larger rhythms of the natural landscape. In poems that are classical and eloquent, ranging from sonnets and rhymed quatrains to highly flexible free verse, Warren vividly probes the savagery of aging, the corruption of the human body and human estrangement from the divine, evoking as well scenes of simple tenderness and beauty. This year's recipient of an Ingram Merrill grant and the Lavan Award from the Academy of American Poets that honors a poet of exceptional merit under the age of forty, Rosanna Warren is clearly one of the most gifted poets of her generation.
- Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
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