Library Journal - Library JournalMandelstam once declared, ``The word is flesh and bread,'' and this emphasis on the primacy of language as the embodiment of culture is evident in Tristia , his second book and an important work of modern literature. One finds here perfectly honed poems of immense beauty and exquisite craftsmanship that reveal the metaphysical grandeur of this earth through precise, careful description of its most concrete objects: ``Silence stands like a spinning wheel in the white room.'' In these lines, the cosmopolitan Mandelstam links himself to another great poetOvid, who composed his Tristia when exiled to the shores of the Black Sea. Mandelstam perished in the Gulag rather than compromise his artistic and moral integrity. McClelland's faithful and loving translationthe first to render Tristia in its entiretybelongs in all literary collections. Alphonse Vinh, Yale Univ . Lib.
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