Dunn, Stephen Different Hours

ISBN 13: 9780393322323

Different Hours

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9780393322323: Different Hours
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Winner of the 2001 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry.

A wise and graceful new collection by one of our "major, indispensable poets" (Sidney Lea). The mysteries of Eros and Thanatos, the stubborn endurance of mind and body in the face of diminishment--these are the undercurrents of Stephen Dunn's eleventh volume. "I am interested in exploring the 'different' hours," he says, "not only of one's life, but also of the larger historical and philosophical life beyond the personal."

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About the Author:

Stephen Dunn is the author of nineteen poetry collections, including the Pulitzer Prize–winning Different Hours, and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award and the recipient of an Academy Award for Literature. His poems have appeared in The New Yorker, Atlantic, and American Poetry Review, among many other publications. A distinguished professor emeritus at Richard Stockton University, he lives in Frostburg, Maryland.

From Publishers Weekly:

This sensitive 11th book from Dunn (Loosestrife) largely sticks to familiar territory: in one central poem, a "master" advises the speaker to "Use what's lying around the house./ Make it simple and sad." Dunn follows that advice unwaveringly: his short lyrics in conversational language address the difficulties and small victories of everyday lifeAfears on turning 60, marital quarrels, suburban weather, "the commonplace and its contingencies." Like Gerald Stern and Philip Booth, Dunn strives to describe the travails of ordinary people in language not only simplified but generalized: a friend's divorce leads the speaker to say "no one can know what goes on/ in the pale trappings of bedrooms," while scary headlines and advancing age prompt the remark that "it's tempting to believe/ we lived in simpler times." Poems about places offer few surprises: Italy yields "the chosen gloomy beauty of a tourist town," and a series of poems about Dunn's native South Jersey produce phrases almost as stale. Many poems try so hard for their transparency that they become predictable, so hard to be representative that their speakers seem too normal to be true, even the usually multi-valent Odysseus, who here "sailed through storm and wild sea/ as if his beloved were all that ever mattered." Such mythical alter egos, when they appear, disappear into the dominant mode here, that of a quiet family man who wants to be kind and to marvel at the ordinary, "amazed/ that the paper has been delivered." Fans will pick up this book to get news of his latest doings, but despite its accessibility, it will draw few new subscribers. (Nov.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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9780393049862: Different Hours: Poems

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ISBN 10: 0393049868 ISBN 13: 9780393049862
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company, 2000
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