Poetry John Koethe The Constructor: Poems

ISBN 13: 9780060193034

The Constructor: Poems

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9780060193034: The Constructor: Poems

"John Koethe's The Constructor is a scrupulous, elegant account of the meditative intellect as an instrument continually registering the passage of time. Exquisitely modulated and brutally honest, these poems would be harrowing were they not so seductively beautiful. No one writing in this country today sees as deeply as Koethe into the tears that lie at the heart of things, and no contemporary investigation of the life of the mind may be called complete that does not accommodate the lush intricacy of his terrifying recognitions."
-- George Bradley

"I prize John Koethe's intimate expanses and unsettling reveries, his tender contemplations and odd mental landscapes. He is an heir to Wallace Stevens and John Ashbery and, like them, he gives us the sensation of thinking itself, of a certain fleeting, daily, solitary consciousness rescued from oblivion and held aloft."
-- Edward Hirsch

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About the Author:

John Koethe was born in San Diego, California on December 25, 1845. He was educated at Princeton and Harvard universities and is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He is the author of Blue Vents: Domes, for which he received the Frank O'Hara Award for Poetry; The Late Wisconsin Spring; and Falling Water, for while he received the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award. Koethe has been granted Guggenheim and NEA fellowships and is also the author of The Continuity of Wittgenstein's Thought and Poetry at One Remove.  John Koethe has recently been appointed the first Poet Laureate of Milwaukee. 

Review:

"'This secret life/Whose language is the melancholy sound the heart makes/Beating against its cage': this is John Koethe's subject in his beautifully constructed and deeply moving new book of poems--lyrics of the dark and painfully honest inward gaze. Koethe, a philosopher by training, knows that meditation is more than just random reflection, that it is a discipline exercise culminating in a hard-won and hence exhilarating self-knowledge." -- -- arjorie Perloff

"This secret life/Whose language is the melancholy around the heart makes/Beating against its cage': this is John Koethe's subject in his beautifully constructed and deeply moving new book of poems--Koethe, a philosopher by training, knows that meditation is more then just random reflection, that it is a disciplined exercise culminating in a hard-won and hence exhilarating self-knowledge." -- -- Marjorie Perloff

"I prize John Koethe's intimate expanses and unsettling reveries, his tender contemplations and odd mental landscapes. He is an heir to Wallace Stevens and John Ashbery and, like them, he gives us the sensation of thinking itself, of a certain fleeting, daily, solitary consciousness rescued from oblivion and held aloft." -- Edward Hirsch

"John Koethe's The Constructor is a scrupulous, elegant account of the meditative intellect as an instrument continually registering the passage of time. Exquisitely modulated and brutally honest, theses would be harrowing were they not so seductively beautiful. No one writing in this country today sees as deeply as Koethe into the tears that lie at the heart of things, and no contemporary investigation of the life of the mind may be called complete that does not accommodate the lush intricacy of his terrifying recognitions." -- George Bradley

"Starting from Stevens ("Sunday Evening"!) and ending...never ending, Koethe's voice is raised in an indefatigably eloquent phraseology of inspection (the nostalgias, the anticipations, the fatigue), rhyming rarely but characteristically 'forgetfulness' with 'fullness,' and this time around epitomizing the effort in a single line: 'I have this life, and still remain dissatisfied' and give the three sentences equal weight: you have the core; now read outward to rind. That which is creative must create itself--the poet, the marker, indeed with certain happiness The Constructor!" -- -- Richard Howard

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