The Other Life: Selected Poems of Herbert Scott / Edition 1

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The Other Life is testament to a quiet force in American poetry, to a generous soul who bore witness to the world with goodwill and good humor. While Herbert Scott was a modest man, this collection is not a modest accomplishment. Reading these wonderful, rich poems spanning his entire career gathered together in one book feels like a warm home we enter from the cold. We can take our boots off, sit down and calmly ease into the sustaining light of these poems.
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What People Are Saying

Jim Daniels
"I'm struck by the wide range of Scott's work, from the stunning complexity and beauty of the long poems, 'Dinosaurs' and 'In the Palm of Space,' to Groceries, the groundbreaking collection of poems about work in a supermarket. Here is a poet who was committed to his own evolution as a writer, regardless of current trends or fashions. These unpretentious poems reflect the vision of someone always listening, always paying attention, looking slightly askew at our absurd, at times heartbreaking world. When Scott writes in the 'we' voice, he is speaking for all of us, and when he takes on the persona of a butcher or an apprentice gravedigger, a minister or an assassin, he does so with empathy and respect. His rich portraits of ordinary men and women are simply unforgettable. These poems sing with their spare, clean lines. They sing with quiet humility and gentle grace. They sing with the music of secular prayer. They bless us all."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780887485213
  • Publisher: Carnegie-Mellon University Press
  • Publication date: 1/8/2010
  • Series: Carnegie Mellon Poetry Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

HERBERT S. SCOTT (1931–2006) was the founding editor of New Issues Poetry & Prose. His books of poetry include Sleeping Woman (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 2005), Durations (Louisiana State University Press, 1984), Groceries (University of Pittsburgh Press, 1976), and Disguises (University of Pittsburgh Press, 1974). A limited edition letterpress book, In the Palm of Space, came out from Sutton Hoo Press in 2001. Scott taught at Western Michigan University, where he was the Gwen Frostic Professor of Creative Writing.

DAVID DODD LEE is the author of The Nervous Filaments (Four Way Books, 2010), as well as four other books of poems: Abrupt Rural (New Issues, 2004), Arrow Pointing North (Four Way Books, 2002), Wilderness (March Street Press, 2000), and Downsides of Fish Culture (New Issues, 1997).

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Table of Contents

Foreword - David Dodd Lee

Achilles' Heel
The Woman Who Loves Old Men
Fathers of Desire
The Dead
The Past
The Future
On the Missouri
The God That Keeps Us Alive
Early Love
Oklahoma Sunset
Woman with Pitcher
The Ceremony of the Ducks
The Man Who Would Be a Mother
As She Enters Her Seventieth Year She Dreams of Milk
The Other Life

The Shoplifter's Handbook
Opening Up
The Childhood of a Grocer
Butcher's Dream
Boss on the Floor
Boss's Dream
Good Fresh Country Eggs
Red Meat
Six-Month Review
Bag Boy
Pet Foods
The Clerk's Dream
Relief Locations Manager
Produce's Mouse
Produce and Relief
The Pig Man
Butcher's Wife
Boss's Father
Canned Goods
Canned Goods' Dream
The Grocer's Children
Closing Up
The Fear of Groceries
The Lost Aisles
Cracked Eggs
Home Delivery
Boss's Lament
Armed Robbery

The Apprentice Gravedigger
Crow Box
Grandfather Billy
The Beekeeper's Wife
Late Fall, Setting Traps
Passing the Masonic Home for the Aged
Lines on the Ninetieth Birthday of Addie C.
Picture Puzzle
The Fabulous Frazonis Appear on the Bozo Show
For a Woman Whose Fiancé Was Killed at War
Winter in a Different House
Spring Commences
The Drinkers
Julius Caesar Appears on a Late-Night Talk Show
The Derelict
The Watcher
The Astronaut
The Burial Queen
And So Forth . . .
Moving Out

Sleeping Woman
The Unforgiven
In a Field of Sunlight
Nude on a Kitchen Stool
And the Sleet Cometh Down
The Most Terrible and Beautiful Thing
The Song the Stone Child Sings
The Song the Burnt Child Sings
Mendelssohn at Midnight
The Father's Song
The Mother's Last Song
She Dreams a Letter from Her Son
The Song the Old Woman Sings
The Air We Now Breathe
The Song the Minister Sings
Winter Day
The Song the Lost Children Sing
Rain After Midnight
The Song the Assassin Sings
Bedtime Story
My Father's Fortune
Mother at the Mirror, 1939
Oklahoma Pastoral
My Father's Bulldogs
Evening Dawn
Farm Dogs
That Summer
The Death and Resurrection of Jesse James
Evening, Milking
To Death, For My Father
St. Petersburg, My Father Walks the Beach
Snowstorm on Mozart's Birthday
The Blue Turtle
In the Palm of Space

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