Where Shall I Wander

Where Shall I Wander

3.5 4
by John Ashbery
     
 

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You meant more than life to me. I lived through you not knowing, not knowing I
was living.
I learned that you called for me. I came to where you were living, up a stair. There was no one there.
No one to appreciate me. The legality of it upset a chair. Many times to celebrate we were called together and where we had been there was nothing there,
nothing

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Overview

You meant more than life to me. I lived through you not knowing, not knowing I
was living.
I learned that you called for me. I came to where you were living, up a stair. There was no one there.
No one to appreciate me. The legality of it upset a chair. Many times to celebrate we were called together and where we had been there was nothing there,
nothing that is anywhere. We passed obliquely,
leaving no stare. When the sun was done muttering,
in an optimistic way, it was time to leave that there.

— from "The New Higher"

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
This 23rd collection from Harold Bloom's favorite living American poet is a modestly scaled affair: it doesn't end with a grand long poem, which has become an Ashbery trademark since Rivers and Mountains, nor is it especially big like Can You Hear, Bird nor does it even contain many poems that extend more than three pages (the title poem, at seven pages, is the longest). The book as a whole takes the pleasures of games and makes of them poetic seductions; the adjective "Ashberian"--part Joseph Cornell, part Henry James, part Close Encounters--is perhaps the only one possible to describe the work at this point: "Another's narrative supplants the crawling/ stock-market quotes. Like all good things/ life tends to go on too long.../ Rains bathe the rainbow,/ and the shape of night is an empty cylinder,/ focused at us, urging its noncompliance/ closer along the way we chose to go." Perhaps his secret is in providing us with the experience of terrible encounter in the comfort of our own poem, one that we can choose to occupy for years, even after discovering the beating heart under the floorboards. (Mar. 1) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780060765293
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
03/01/2005
Pages:
96
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.60(d)

Read an Excerpt

Where Shall I Wander

New Poems
By John Ashbery

HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

Copyright ©2006 John Ashbery
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0060765305

O Fortuna

Good luck! Best wishes! The best of luck!
The very best! Godspeed! God bless you!
Peace be with you!
May your shadow never be less!
We can see through to the other side,
you see. It's your problem, we know,
but I can't help feeling a little envious.
What if darkness became unhinged right now?
Boomingly, swimmingly one remounts the current.
Here is where the shade was, the suggestion of flowers,
and peace, in another place.
Our competition is like tools of a certain order.
No one would have found them useful at first.
It wasn't until a real emergency arose, that someone
had the sense to recognize for what it was.
All hell didn't break loose, it was like a rising psalm
materializing like snow on an unseen mountain.
All that was underfoot was good, but lost.

Continues...


Excerpted from Where Shall I Wander by John Ashbery Copyright ©2006 by John Ashbery. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for thepersonal use of visitors to this web site.

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