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"Adrienne Rich's new prose collection could have been titled The Essential Rich."--Women's Review of Books These essays trace a distinguished writer's engagement with her time, her arguments with herself and others. "I am a poet who knows the social power of poetry, a United States citizen who knows herself irrevocably tangled in her society's hopes, arrogance, and despair," Adrienne Rich writes. The essays in Arts of the Possible search for possibilities beyond a compromised, degraded system, seeking to imagine something else. They call on the fluidity of the imagination, from poetic vision to social justice, from the badlands of political demoralization to an art that might wound, that may open scars when engaged in its work, but will finally suture and not tear apart. This volume collects Rich's essays from the last decade of the twentieth century, including four earlier essays, as well as several conversations that go further than the usual interview. Also included is her essay explaining her reasons for declining the National Medal for the Arts. "The work is inspired and inspiring."--Alicia Ostriker "[S]o clear and clean and thorough. I learn from her again and again."--Grace Paley
Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. In this, her thirteenth book of verse, the author of "The Dream of a Common Language" and "Snapshots of a Daughter-in-Law" writes of war, oppression, the future, death, mystery, love and the magic of poetry.
The Best American Poetry 1996 contains a diverse abundance of poems published in 1995. More African-American, Native American, Latin, gay, and women poets are represented here than in any previous volume.
That Adrienne Rich is a not only a major American poet but an incisive, compelling prose writer is made clear once again by this collection, in which she continues to explore the social and political context of her life and art. Examining the connections between history and the imagination, ethics and action, she explores the possible meanings of being white, female, lesbian, Jewish, and a United States citizen, both at this particular time and through the lens of the past.
"When does a life bend towards freed? grasp its direction" asks Adrienne Rich in Dark Fields of the Republic, her major new work. Her explorations go to the heart of democracy and love, and the historical and present endangerment of both. A theater of voices of men and women, the dead and the living, over time and across continents, the poems of Dark Fields of the Republic take conversations, imaginary and real, actions taken for better or worse, out of histories and songs to extend the poet's reach of witness and power of connection--and then invites the reader to participate.
In her seventh volume of poetry, Adrienne Rich searches to reclaim--to discover--what has been forgotten, lost, or unexplored.<P><P> "I came to explore the wreck. / The words are purposes. / The words are maps. / I came to see the damage that was done / and the treasures that prevail." These provocative poems move with the power of Rich's distinctive voice. <P> Winner of the National Book Award
"Certain lines had become like incantations to me, words I'd chanted to myself through sorrow and confusion" --Cheryl Strayed, Wild "The Dream of a Common Language explores the contours of a woman's heart and mind in language for everybody--language whose plainness, laughter, questions and nobility everyone can respond to. . . . No one is writing better or more needed verse than this."--Boston Evening Globe
A reissue of the classic Adrienne Rich selection, revised and expanded to cover the entirety of her career, with a new Introduction. The Fact of a Doorframe is the ideal introduction to Rich's opus, from her formative lyricism in A Change of Word (1951), to the groundbreaking poems of Diving into the Wreck (1973), to the searching voice of Fox (2001).
"A challenging collection that should more than satisfy [Rich's] large and loyal following."--Washington Post Book World In this volume, Adrienne Rich pursues her signature themes and takes them further: the discourse between poetry and history, interlocutions within and across gender, dialogues between poets and visual artists, human damages and dignity, and the persistence of utopian visions. Here Rich continues taking the temperature of mind and body in her time in an intimate and yet commanding voice that resonates long after an initial reading. Fox is formidable and moving, fierce and passionate, and one of Rich's most powerful works to date. "Justly celebrated....Rich has long wanted to set her readers' minds blazing...she succeeds."--Publishers Weekly starred review "Intimate, explorative, these are poems with a millennial feel, at once retrospective and forward-looking."--Washington Post Book World
"Adrienne Rich is the Blake of American letters."--Nadine Gordimer Across more than three decades Adrienne Rich's essays have been praised for their lucidity, courage, and range of concerns. In A Human Eye, Rich examines a diverse selection of writings and their place in past and present social disorders and transformations. Beyond literary theories, she explores from many angles how the arts of language have acted on and been shaped by their creators' worlds.
The final volume of poems assembled by America's most powerful and distinctive poetic voice. In Later Poems: Selected and New 1971-2012, the strong trajectory of the work of one of the most important artists of American letters is on display. This volume brings together a remarkable body of work. Included are Adrienne Rich's own selections from twelve volumes of published works, including the National Book Award-winning Diving Into the Wreck, An Atlas of the Difficult World, and her most recent volume, Tonight No Poetry Will Serve, along with ten powerful new poems, previously uncollected. Among these, "From Strata" is a kind of archaeology of the present day; "Itinerary" searches for an "indefinite future" in a menaced landscape; "For the Young Anarchists" offers a trope of skilled labor for political action; and the haunting voice of "Teethsucking Bird" reminds us of what we have been told to forget. This collection testifies to a monumental career that distinguished American literature in the late twentieth century and will continue to inspire readers for years to come.
Leaflets is Adrienne Rich's fifth book of poems. It contains twenty-eight new poems, five adaptations of Dutch, Yiddish, and Russian poets, and a sequence of seventeen poems loosely based on the ghazal, a common form in Middle Eastern poetic tradition; these ghazals comprise a kind of notebook of a month in the summer of 1968. The themes of this book are the poetics of violence and the poetics of love. Its impulse is the deepening of recognitions through language, in a time of ignorance and mutilation. Miss Rich has written: "For a poet...there is this primary labor with words. But I have the notion that how you live your life has something to do with it--that morality, for a poet, is a refusal of blinders, of traditional consolations, a courage to be alone, or wounded....A willingness to step out into the fog, to take paths which may lead nowhere. Certainty, predictability, are the first supports that have to go. I see the poetry of things as standing in resistance to brute mechanistic force, the charge of the rhinoceros with its head down. To discover--literally--this poetry and re-create it in language is a poet's essential action."
"An impressive new volume. . . . Rich's admirers will recognize the complex symbiosis between the activist and the maker of new language, each propelling, describing, provoking the other's words."--Publishers Weekly "Look: with all my fear I'm here with you, trying what it means, to stand fast; what it means to move." In these astonishing new poems, Adrienne Rich dares to look and to extend her poetic language as witness to the treasures--the midnight salvage--we rescue from fear and fragmentation. Rich's work has long challenged social plausibilities built on violence and demoralizing power. In Midnight Salvage, she continues her explorations at the end of the century, trying, as she has said, "to face the terrible with hope, in language as complex as necessary, as communicative as possible--a poetics which can work as antidote to complacency, self-involvement, and despair. I have wanted to assume a theater of voices rather than the restricted I. To write for both readers I know exist and those I can only imagine, finding their own salvaged beauty as I have found mine." "In her vision of warning and her celebration of life, Adrienne Rich is the Blake of American letters."--Nadine Gordimer
Adrienne Rich's influential and landmark investigation concerns both the experience and the institution of motherhood. The experience is her own--as a woman, a poet, a feminist, and a mother--but it is an experience determined by the institution, imposed on all women everywhere. She draws on personal materials, history, research, and literature to create a document of universal importance.
In this collection of prose writings, one of America's foremost poets and feminist theorists reflects upon themes that have shaped her life and work. At issue are the politics of language; the uses of scholarship; and the topics of racism, history, and motherhood among others called forth by Rich as "part of the effort to define a female consciousness which is political, aesthetic, and erotic, and which refuses to be included or contained in the culture of passivity."
In the traditional of great literary manifestos, Norton is proud to present this powerful work by Adrienne Rich. With passion, critical questioning, and humor, Adrienne Rich suggests how poetry has actually been lived in the world, past and present. In this essay, which was the basis for her speech upon accepting the National Book Foundation's Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, she ranges among themes including poetry's disparagement as "either immoral or unprofitable," the politics of translation, how poetry enters into extreme situations, different poetries as conversations across place and time. In its openness to many voices, Poetry and Commitment offers a perspective on poetry in an ever more divided and violent world. "I hope never to idealize poetry--it has suffered enough from that. Poetry is not a healing lotion, an emotional massage, a kind of linguistic aromatherapy. Neither is it a blueprint, nor an instruction manual, nor a billboard."
"Trust Rich, a clarion poet of conscience, to get the fractured timbre of the times just right."--Booklist, starred review In this new collection Adrienne Rich confronts dislocations and upheavals in the United States at the beginning of the twenty-first century. The title poem, in a young schoolteacher's voice, evokes the lessons that children ("Not of course here") learn amid violence and hatred, "when the whole town flinches / blood on the undersole thickening to glass." "Usonian Journals 2000" intercuts faces and conversations, building to a dystopic/utopic vision. Throughout these fierce and musical poems, Rich traces the imprint of a public crisis on individual experience: personal lives bent by collective realities, language itself held to account.
"The risk this book quietly takes, and impressively fulfills, is no less than to get life said.... Newly freed from the metrical conventions of her earlier books, Adrienne Rich has lost none of her perfect pitch for the tones of language itself." --Philip Booth, The Christian Science Monitor First published in 1963, this book is now restored to print in a new edition containing some revisions and one hitherto unpublished poem.
"Rich's lyrics are powerful and mournful, drenched in memory." --San Francisco Chronicle To view text with line endings as poet intended, please set font size to the smallest size on your device.
Time's Power is a new book by a major American poet, and a landmark in a distinguished ongoing career. For thirty years, Rich's poetry has revealed the individual personal life--sexualities, loves, damages, struggles--as inseparable from a wider social condition, a world with others, in which the empowering of the disempowered is increasingly the source of human hope. Now her mature vision engages with the power of time itself: memory and its contradictions, the ebb and flow between parents and children, the deaths we all face sooner or later, the meaning of human responsibility in all this. "Letters in the Family," for example, is written in the voices of three women--from the Spanish Civil War, from a Jewish rescue mission behind Nazi lines, and from present-day Southern Africa. Time's Power shows Rich writing with unprecedented range, complexity, and authority.
Relationships--partings/reconciliations, solidarities/ruptures, trust/betrayal, exposure/withdrawal--are the deep fabric of this forceful work. In the intimate address of "Axel Avákar," the black humor of "Quarto," and the underground journey of "Powers of Recuperation," compressed lyrics flash among larger scenarios where images, dialogues, blues, and song spiral into political visions. Adrienne Rich has said, "I believe almost everything I know, have come to understand, is somewhere in this book." from "Ballade of the Poverties" There's the poverty of wages wired for the funeral you Can't get to the poverty of bodies lying unburied There's the poverty of labor offered silently on the curb The poverty of yard sale scrapings spread And rejected the poverty of eviction, wedding bed out on street Prince let me tell you who will never learn through words There are poverties and there are poverties.
America's enduring poet of conscience reflects on the proven and potential role of poetry in contemporary politics and life. Through journals, letters, dreams, and close readings of the work of many poets, Adrienne Rich reflects on how poetry and politics enter and impinge on American life. This expanded edition includes a new preface by the author as well as her post-9/11 "Six Meditations in Place of a Lecture."
"We are in the presence here of a major American poet whose voice at mid-century in her own life is increasingly marked by moral passion."--New York Times Book Review
"The Will to Change is an extraordinary book of poems...It has the urgency of a prisoner's journal: patient, laconic, eloquent, as if determined thoughts were set down in stolen moments." --David Kalstone in The New York Times Book Review "The Will to Change must be read whole: for its tough distrust of completion and for its cool declaratives which fix us with a stare more unsettling than the most hysterical questions...It includes moments when poverty and heroism explode grammer with their own dignified unsyntactical demands...The poems are about departures, about the pain of breaking away from lovers and from an old sense of self. They discover the point where loneliness and politics touch, where the exercise of the radical courage takes its inevitable toll."--David Kalstone in The New York Times Book Review
A major American poet faces her own native land, her own life, and the result is a volume of compelling, transforming poems. The book includes two extraordinary longer works: the self-exploratory "Sources" and "Contradictions--Tracking Poems," an ongoing index of an American woman's life. The poet writes, "In these poems I have been trying to speak from, and of, and to, my country. To speak of a different claim from those staked by the patriots of the sword; to speak of the land itself, the cities, and of the imaginations that have dwelt here, at risk, unfree, assaulted, erased. I believe more than ever that the search for justice and compassion is the great wellspring for poetry in our time, throughout the world, though the theme of despair has been canonized in this country. I draw strength from the traditions of all those who, with every reason to despair, have refused to do so."
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