Michael White The Island

ISBN 13: 9781556590504

The Island

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While he was Poet Laureate of the United States (1990-91), Mark Strand selected this book for publication with special funds administered by the National Endowment for the Arts, saying, No first book in recent memory has so much wisdom, so much lyric conviction as Michael White's The Island. I find his poems astonishingly mature, profound, evocative. White's poems rise from the dark interstices of memory and imagination, his brief love poems of uncannily bright phrasing providing counterpoint to his mastery of elegiac meditation. He knows the water-world of rivers and bays and boats so intuitively that his rhythms of language and image often convey a parallel sense of time and motion, his eye for luminous detail elevating an already impressive gift for narrative. White's imaginative world is like no other in contemporary poetry. He evokes Emersonian themes as comfortably as he explores a range of verse forms, his landscapes gravitating toward an art of fleeting illusory grace.

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From Publishers Weekly:

The majority of the work in this debut collection is elegiac, with poems written in memory of or in homage to loved ones, friends and writers who have affected the direction of White's own writing. In many cases the poems are stately in their construction, polished works filled with descriptions of mountain passes, oceans and rivers: ``Down from the mountains, down from Catherine's Pass, / Cloud shadows, rolling transparencies, flowed over / The glacier lakes; and the wind raked the granite upthrusts, / Shivered the backs of the sunshot lupine meadows . . . '' The language is mature and dense, though often disturbingly uncontemporary, as in the opening poem, with its fine image of children's toys left out on dusty lawns ``in random, upflung attitudes of exultation.'' The figures that the speaker presents are haunting and the accuracy of detail is laudable, but this is undercut by a kind of pedantry of expression. White is interested in the fleeting beauty of this life. He records its shifting light and rippling water with dexterity, and yet in the heavy cadences and ornamental description, he often constructs a damper that checks the vitality of the story he wants to tell.

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Book Description Copper Canyon Press, 1992. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. While he was Poet Laureate of the United States (1990-91), Mark Strand selected this book for publication with special funds administered by the National Endowment for the Arts, saying, No first book in recent memory has so much wisdom, so much lyric conviction as Michael White s The Island. I find his poems astonishingly mature, profound, evocative. White s poems rise from the dark interstices of memory and imagination, his brief love poems of uncannily bright phrasing providing counterpoint to his mastery of elegiac meditation. He knows the water-world of rivers and bays and boats so intuitively that his rhythms of language and image often convey a parallel sense of time and motion, his eye for luminous detail elevating an already impressive gift for narrative. White s imaginative world is like no other in contemporary poetry. He evokes Emersonian themes as comfortably as he explores a range of verse forms, his landscapes gravitating toward an art of fleeting illusory grace. Seller Inventory # AAC9781556590504

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Book Description Copper Canyon Press, 1992. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. While he was Poet Laureate of the United States (1990-91), Mark Strand selected this book for publication with special funds administered by the National Endowment for the Arts, saying, No first book in recent memory has so much wisdom, so much lyric conviction as Michael White s The Island. I find his poems astonishingly mature, profound, evocative. White s poems rise from the dark interstices of memory and imagination, his brief love poems of uncannily bright phrasing providing counterpoint to his mastery of elegiac meditation. He knows the water-world of rivers and bays and boats so intuitively that his rhythms of language and image often convey a parallel sense of time and motion, his eye for luminous detail elevating an already impressive gift for narrative. White s imaginative world is like no other in contemporary poetry. He evokes Emersonian themes as comfortably as he explores a range of verse forms, his landscapes gravitating toward an art of fleeting illusory grace. Seller Inventory # AAC9781556590504

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