Straw for the Fire: From the Notebooks of Theodore Roethke

Straw for the Fire: From the Notebooks of Theodore Roethke


Usually ships within 6 days


“There are only two passions in art; there are love and hate—with endless modifications.”—Theodore Roethke

At his death, Theodore Roethke left behind 277 spiral notebooks full of poetry fragments, aphorisms, jokes, memos, journal entries, random phrases, bits of dialogue, commentary, and fugitive miscellany. Within these notebooks, Roethke allowed his mind to rove freely, moment by moment, moving from the practical to the transcendental, from the halting to the sublime.

Fellow poet and colleague David Wagoner distilled these notebooks—twelve linear feet of bookshelf—into an energetic, wise, and rollicking collection that shows Roethke to be one of the truly phenomenal creative sources in American poetry.

From “A Psychic Janitor”:

I’m sick of fumbling, furtive, disorganized minds like bad lawyers trying to make too many points that this is an age of criticism: and these, mind you, tin-eared punks who couldn’t tell a poem from an old boot if a gun were put to their heads . . .
Cover art by United States Poet Laureate Ted Kooser.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781556592485
Publisher: Copper Canyon Press
Publication date: 11/01/2006
Pages: 256
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Roethke (1908-1963) won the Pulitzer Prize in 1954 for The Waking, and received the National Book Award for Words for the Wind in 1957. He was a demanding and beloved teacher who taught at many colleges and universities, including Lafayette, Penn State, Bennington, and the University of Washington. David Wagoner was a student, friend, and colleague of Theodore Roethke's. He is the author of over a dozen books of poetry and fiction, a longtime editor at Poetry Northwest, and Professor of English at University of Washington.

Customer Reviews