The Arkansas Testament


Walcott's eight collection of poems is divided into two parts — "There," verse evoking the poet's native Carribbean, and "Elsewhere."

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Walcott's eight collection of poems is divided into two parts — "There," verse evoking the poet's native Carribbean, and "Elsewhere."

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Despite its title, this is another evocation of Walcott's St. Lucia, a Caribbean paradise of whelk-gatherers, sea grapes, and sugar cane where the poet reads ``silvery nouns'' and deciphers ``scriptures of sand.'' Walcott is again the consummate phrasemaker, describing a night ``with white rum on its breath'' and a moon ``with a birthmark like Gorbachev's head.'' He includes a sequence of poignant love poems and concludes with the title poem, a painful examination of the visiting black poet's role in an Arkansas where he ``was still nothing.'' In language that is unfailingly fresh and inventive, Walcott reminds us in every poem that a largely unexperienced world exists just ``outside the door.'' Daniel L. Guillory, Millikin Univ., Decatur, Ill.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780374520991
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
  • Publication date: 2/28/1989
  • Pages: 128
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Derek Walcott was born in St. Lucia in 1930. He is the author of thirteen collections of poetry, seven collections of plays, and a book of essays. He received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1992.

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Table of Contents

The Lighthouse 3
Cul de Sac Valley 9
Roseau Valley 16
A Latin Primer 21
The Villa Restaurant 25
The Three Musicians 28
Saint Lucia's First Communion 33
Gros-Ilet 34
The Whelk Gatherers 36
White Magic 38
A Letter from the Old Guard 40
Storm Figure 44
Marina Tsvetaeva 46
The Light of the World 48
Oceano Nox 52
Night Fishing 56
To Norline 57
Eulogy to W.H. Auden 61
Elsewhere 66
Steam 68
Central America 70
Roman Peace 71
Salsa 72
Sunday in the Old Republic 73
French Colonial. "Vers de Societe" 75
Mimi, the Near-Suicide 77
Fame 78
Tomorrow, Tomorrow 79
Streams 80
Winter Lamps 82
For Adrian 87
Safe Conduct 89
Pentecost 90
The Young Wife 91
Summer Elegies 93
A Propertius Quartet 97
Menelaus 101
God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen, Part II 102
The Arkansas Testament 104
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