Ours

Ours

by Cole Swensen

Paperback(First Edition)

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Overview


These poems are about gardens, particularly the seventeenth-century French baroque gardens designed by the father of the form, André Le Nôtre. While the poems focus on such examples as Versailles, which Le Nôtre created for Louis XIV, they also explore the garden as metaphor. Using the imagery of the garden, Cole Swensen considers everything from human society to the formal structure of poetry. She looks in particular at the concept of public versus private property, asking who actually owns a garden? A gentle irony accompanies the question because in French, the phrase "le nôtre" means "ours." Whereas all of Le Nôtre's gardens were designed and built for the aristocracy, today most are public parks. Swensen probes the two senses of "le nôtre" to discover where they intersect, overlap, or blur.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780520254640
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 04/08/2008
Series: New California Poetry , #24
Edition description: First Edition
Pages: 118
Product dimensions: 7.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.38(d)

About the Author


Cole Swensen is the author of eleven previous books of poetry. She is also a translator and has won the PEN USA Award in Literary Translation. Her poetry has won the Iowa Poetry Prize and the San Francisco State Poetry Center Book Award, and she teaches at the Iowa Writers' Workshop.

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments
Introduction

HISTORY
A Garden Is a Start
Paradise
Leaving the Middle Ages
The Birth of Landscape Architecture
The Garden as Architecture Itself
The Garden as Extension
Sir Mine
Gardens Belong

PRINCIPLES
In an Effort to Make the Garden a Standing Proof
Certain Principles Must Be Observed
A Garden Occurs in Four Stages
A Garden as a Letter
A Garden as Between
A Garden as a Unit of Measure
Anamorphosis
Euclid's Eighth Theorem
Because a Garden Must End

VAUX-LE-VICOMTE
If a Garden of Numbers
Further Notes on the Collusion of Time and Space
Working Conditions
Charles Le Brun (1619-1690)
Water
Labyrinths and Mazes

OTHER GARDENS
Saint-Germain-en-Laye
Chantilly
Saint-Cloud
Meudon

THE MEDICIS
Catherine (1519-1589)
Marie (1573-1642)
The Luxembourg Gardens

VERSAILLES
Versailles the Unfurled
The Divinity of the Sun King
The Garden as a Map of Louis XIV
Le Nôtre's Drawings
And the Birds, Too
The Ghost of Much Later

STATUARY

ORANGERIES

"YOU ARE A HAPPY MAN, LE NÔTRE"
On Happiness
Psychic Botany
The Gardened Heart
Tuileries, January 2007
Keeping Track of Distance

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"Engaging and delightful."—Publishers Weekly

"Highly recommended for contemporary poetry collections."—Library Journal

"The best landscape architecture book of the year is a book-length poem."—Archnewsnow.com

"The unrelenting lens Swensen turns on the [gardens] allows us to glimpse some of the myriad layers that constitute history."—Harvard Review

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