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World as a Dictionary

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A collection of poetry by Jesse Lee Kercheval.
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Overview

A collection of poetry by Jesse Lee Kercheval.
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What People Are Saying

Ron Wallace
“From the powerful and unforgettable opening sequence which recounts, with passionate intensity and uncompromising honesty, the death of a dear friend from cancer; through the wonderful middle poems on the complex pleasures of marriage, motherhood, and family life; to the final meditations on the poet’s own intractable childhood; World as Dictionary explores the vagaries of love, loss, desire, and will. At times heartbreaking and elegiac, mourning a universe that ‘is racing from us/ at the speed of light/ and . . . is never coming back,’ Kercheval is also unswervingly affirmative, celebrating with her infant daughter (whose word for ‘open’ expands her world), ‘Ope, ope, ope . . . we live in hope./ My daughter claps her hands.’ Fierce, intimate, lyrical, profound, and true, World as Dictionary is a beautiful, beautiful book. A book that lives in hope. A book that claps its hands.”
Ron Wallace
"From the powerful and unforgettable opening sequence which recounts, with passionate intensity and uncompromising honesty, the death of a dear friend from cancer; through the wonderful middle poems on the complex pleasures of marriage, motherhood, and family life; to the final meditations on the poet's own intractable childhood; World as Dictionary explores the vagaries of love, loss, desire, and will. At times heartbreaking and elegiac, mourning a universe that 'is racing from us/ at the speed of light/ and . . . is never coming back,' Kercheval is also unswervingly affirmative, celebrating with her infant daughter (whose word for 'open' expands her world), 'Ope, ope, ope . . . we live in hope./ My daughter claps her hands.' Fierce, intimate, lyrical, profound, and true, World as Dictionary is a beautiful, beautiful book. A book that lives in hope. A book that claps its hands."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780887482854
  • Publisher: Carnegie-Mellon University Press
  • Publication date: 4/1/1999
  • Series: Carnegie Mellon Poetry Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 96
  • Product dimensions: 5.45 (w) x 8.44 (h) x 0.26 (d)

Meet the Author

JESSE LEE KERCHEVAL was born in France and raised in Florida. She is a professor of English at the University of Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing. She is the author of a novel, The Museum of Happiness; a collection of short stories, The Dogeater; a book on writing, Building Fiction; and a memoir, Space, about growing up near Cape Kennedy during the race to the moon.
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Table of Contents

HEAVEN
Superstition Mountains, April
Love, a Dark, Untitled Comedy
The Bride Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors, Even
I Am in My Body and My Body Is in Nebraska
The Crisis Is the Body
In My Story
In the Garden with Green Chairs
Ham and the Moon
Night Dogs
Death, a Second Trip by Sea
Glimmerglass
Last Poem
In the Aftermath
Ghosts
The Stage as Bare as Possible

EARTH
Let the Body Do Its Own Work
Life on Other Planets
Your Wife, a Widow, Waits for You
Three Months in Germany
The Greed of Wanting Children
For My Cowgirl Roommate, Lost to Time
Before Flowers, Insects
Blue House, Red Door
Another Life
You Are Born, Everything Changes
Singing for Uncertain Singers
Learning to Think like a Mountain
Daughter Nearly Two
Daughters with Their Horses
World as Dictionary

PARIS
1956
Dreaming against a Backdrop
Home Is Paris, 1959
5411 Kirkland Drive
The Kindness of Strangers
I Am Always Narrowness
Falling to the Sound of My Mother’s Voice
Time Becomes a Child, Sleeping
Picture with No Frame
Glass House
The Children’s Book of Knowledge
We Step Quietly
In a Small City, Somewhere in the Past
Things That Have Escaped Me
Grief in Paris

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