The First Four Books of Poems collects the early work that established Louise Gluck as one of America's most original and important poets. Honored with the Pulitzer Prize for The WildIris, Gluck was celebrated early in her career for her fierce, austerely beautiful voice. InFirstborn, The House on Marshland Wand, Descending Figure, and The Triumph of Achilles, which wonthe National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry, we see the conscious progression of apoet who speaks with blade-like accuracy and stirring depth.
|Edition description:||2nd ed.|
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.60(d)|
About the Author
Louise Glück won the Pulitzer Prize for The Wild Iris in 1993. The author of eight books of poetry and one collection of essays, Proofs and Theories: Essays on Poetry, she has received the National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry, the William Carlos Williams Award, and the PEN/Martha Albrand Award for Nonfiction. She was named the next U.S. poet laureate in August 2003. Her most recent book is The Seven Ages. Louise Glück teaches at Williams College and lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Read an Excerpt
The Chicago Train
Across from me the whole ride
Hardly stirred: just Mister with his barren
Skull across the arm-rest while the kid
Got his head between his mama's legs and slept. The poison
That replaces air took over.
And they sat-as though paralysis preceding death
Had nailed them there. The track bent south.
I saw her pulsing crotch... the lice rooted in that baby's hair.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Louise Gluck is my favorite poet, but these first four books are not her best. However, they give insight into how she has developed her style and themes and for that, they are worth reading.
This book containing Gluck's first 4 collections of poems can be a little spotty at times. I found at least over the first 3 of these works--Firstborn, The House on Marshland and Descending Figure--her work to be a little spotty. At her best her work tends to be dry, objective and penetrating--almost surgical in technique to gain an objective. Of those mentioned above I would often find several that I liked quite a lot but also quite a few that I felt more indifferent about. A lot of those works seem to focus on relationships and relationships that have gone bad. In any case I was wondering whether I wanted to bother with the final collection 'The triumph of Achilles' and I am finally glad that I did as at least IMO it was by far the best of the four--the most focused in intent. There is very little fodder here--there is substance and clarity to practically every poem--Triumph of Achilles is an excellent collection.