Eden (Johns Hopkins: Poetry and Fiction)

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9780801843907: Eden (Johns Hopkins: Poetry and Fiction)
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In her third book of poetry Emily Grosholz brings together forty lyric, narrative, and epistolary poems that trace a pilgrimage from the Eden of childhood through alienation and loss to an earthly paradise regained as the poet establishes her own family and a new sense of the purposes of her art.

The route traverses Detroit in the early twenties, Paris and Washington, D.C., in the early seventies, Athens and Toronto in the mid-eighties, yesterday's Thimphu and Cassis. But it always returns to the poet's heartland, Philadelphia and the back country of Pennsylvania and New York. Punctuated by meditations on solitude and death, the poems come full circle to the pleasures of marriage, of friends and children, of creation. To her husband, the poet writes, "However often now our woven/ lives converge and separate, my love,/ today we've come this far." And to her son, "With you fast in my arms,/ I'm back again in the heart's Italy."

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From Publishers Weekly:

Several different Edens come to light in this cycle of well-crafted and generally felicitous poems. At times Eden is a geographical location, like the fjordstet/eed the speaker travels to in a boat, where one can hear "the fading archaic languages of earth." Eden also is the condition of fulfillment the speaker has achieved though love for her husband and sonson/daughter , the temporary paradise of her son's son's/daughter's childhood ? if you can--since child's childhood is awkward and the realm where language represents imagination. Thus Grosholz ( The River Painter ) sets forth her ars poetica : "Part of the world persists / distinct from what we say, but part will stay / only if we keep talking: only speech / can re-create the gardens of the world." Accordingly, she "keeps talking" and winds all of ordinary life, including confessions and letters to and from friends, into the narrative. For the most part, the poems hold interest because the speaker is intelligent and generous, and because the verse stanzas lead to some interesting surprises, such as the statuary at Buttes Chaumont that is described as "the faint / vanilla goddess."
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal:

"Part of the world persists/ distinct from what we say, but part will stay/ only if we keep talking: only speech/ can re-create the gardens of the world." Gardens, both lived in and visited, can be expected to dominate a collection called Eden. Describing life through gardens, views from windows, and conversation, Grosholz puts herself in a tradition of women's poetry that defies current trends. Her poems are contemplative and philosophical, but in ways that can evoke a class-bound tradition of female solitude and leisure. Writing about the rare and evanescent, she can sometimes sound precious. Nonetheless, there is enchantment to be found in the detail with which Grosholz talks about the elusive parts of her world. For general collections.
- Rob Schmieder, Boston
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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9780801843891: Eden (Johns Hopkins: Poetry and Fiction)

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ISBN 10:  0801843898 ISBN 13:  9780801843891
Publisher: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1992
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