Blue Dusk: New & Selected Poems, 1951-2001

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9781556591662: Blue Dusk: New & Selected Poems, 1951-2001

Contradiction and ambiguity are essential to the poetry of Madeline DeFrees. Her work is concentrated, multi-layered, spliced with humor and characterized by a passionate interest in every aspect of words: their literal and figurative meanings and associations; their histories, usage, disappearances, and resurrections. In her recent poems she approaches complex subjects with a new clarity, the dividend of a long investment in the art of writing.

Just as her poetry demands distance from personal biography and revelation, it is also deeply affected by her own life story, most profoundly her 38-year tenure as a nun. Throughout her writing career—from her early poems written under the name Sister Mary Gilbert, to her newest ones in which she casts a lifelong glance back through history and lineage—the need to reclaim individual identity is balanced against the relinquishment of the self.

From Going Back to the Convent

What was I running from
or into? The uneasy light of the senior
prom? Mother's dream of a a child bride, supported by
pennies from heaven? Or was it the writing
life laid as a sacrifice to a jealous god
on the tomb of the woman
I'd hoped to become?
Whatever it was, it will soon
Be over. I write this now to reclaim it.

A student of John Berryman, Karl Shapiro, and Robert Fitzgerald, Madeline DeFrees has taught generations of poets and poetry students, and earned widespread acclaim for her own work. Madeline DeFrees has taught throughout the US, including at the University of Montana and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where she directed its Creative Writing program. She presently lives in Seattle, WA.

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About the Author:

Madeline DeFrees was born in Oregon in 1919. At age 17 she entered a convent and was a Catholic nun for 38 years. DeFrees is author of ten books of poetry and memoir, and received the Lenore Marshall/The Nation Prize for her selected poems, Blue Dusk.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Scarecrow Gardens
Late-summer squash put out to sea
in coastal storms. All day, wet
leaves let go. I cut down three
sunflowers, a foot through the heart.
Their dried crowns counsel me to turn
my head and pierce the cloud.
As van Gogh understood, gold comes
in many forms: the best is art.

Long Day's Journey into Bloomington
Two Sisters of the Holy Names and one of Holy Cross,
we rode by Greyhound, quick, safe,
dependable (and cheap):
three premises committed to the jolty roads
of contiguity and perpendicular sleep.

Your operator is... a fearful blank,
yet wheel in hand,
divided from his name,
he hurtled us through arbitrary hollows,
scholastic substance
in a joggled frame.

Some place near Kokomo,
where mileage mounts in smoke
and time goes off its standard,
we jerked and I awoke to four anachronisms:
two men with Samson hair, curled beards,
tall crowns and voluntary denim;
their women's faces paler than our own.

I watched them make a clearing
and gravely settle down,
the somber bonnets racked beside the hats,
and bundles of an inconclusive shape
hoisted beside our luggage overhead.

Aimed with gray look beyond me,
out of the close white cap,
one sentence in a language
that might have passed for dead
collided with compliance and forced me,
I confess, into bewildering
alliance by the accidents of dress.

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

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Book Description Copper Canyon Press, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Contradiction and ambiguity are essential to the poetry of Madeline DeFrees. Her work is concentrated, multi-layered, spliced with humor and characterized by a passionate interest in every aspect of words: their literal and figurative meanings and associations; their histories, usage, disappearances, and resurrections. In her recent poems she approaches complex subjects with a new clarity, the dividend of a long investment in the art of writing. Just as her poetry demands distance from personal biography and revelation, it is also deeply affected by her own life story, most profoundly her 38-year tenure as a nun. Throughout her writing career--from her early poems written under the name Sister Mary Gilbert, to her newest ones in which she casts a lifelong glance back through history and lineage--the need to reclaim individual identity is balanced against the relinquishment of the self. From Going Back to the Convent What was I running from or into? The uneasy light of the senior prom? Mother s dream of a a child bride, supported by pennies from heaven? Or was it the writing life laid as a sacrifice to a jealous god on the tomb of the woman I d hoped to become? Whatever it was, it will soon Be over. I write this now to reclaim it. A student of John Berryman, Karl Shapiro, and Robert Fitzgerald, Madeline DeFrees has taught generations of poets and poetry students, and earned widespread acclaim for her own work. Madeline DeFrees has taught throughout the US, including at the University of Montana and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where she directed its Creative Writing program. She presently lives in Seattle, WA. Bookseller Inventory # AAC9781556591662

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Book Description Copper Canyon Press, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Contradiction and ambiguity are essential to the poetry of Madeline DeFrees. Her work is concentrated, multi-layered, spliced with humor and characterized by a passionate interest in every aspect of words: their literal and figurative meanings and associations; their histories, usage, disappearances, and resurrections. In her recent poems she approaches complex subjects with a new clarity, the dividend of a long investment in the art of writing. Just as her poetry demands distance from personal biography and revelation, it is also deeply affected by her own life story, most profoundly her 38-year tenure as a nun. Throughout her writing career--from her early poems written under the name Sister Mary Gilbert, to her newest ones in which she casts a lifelong glance back through history and lineage--the need to reclaim individual identity is balanced against the relinquishment of the self. From Going Back to the Convent What was I running from or into? The uneasy light of the senior prom? Mother s dream of a a child bride, supported by pennies from heaven? Or was it the writing life laid as a sacrifice to a jealous god on the tomb of the woman I d hoped to become? Whatever it was, it will soon Be over. I write this now to reclaim it. A student of John Berryman, Karl Shapiro, and Robert Fitzgerald, Madeline DeFrees has taught generations of poets and poetry students, and earned widespread acclaim for her own work. Madeline DeFrees has taught throughout the US, including at the University of Montana and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where she directed its Creative Writing program. She presently lives in Seattle, WA. Bookseller Inventory # AAC9781556591662

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Book Description Copper Canyon Press, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. Contradiction and ambiguity are essential to the poetry of Madeline DeFrees. Her work is concentrated, multi-layered, spliced with humor and characterized by a passionate interest in every aspect of words: their literal and figurative meanings and associations; their histories, usage, disappearances, and resurrections. In her recent poems she approaches complex subjects with a new clarity, the dividend of a long investment in the art of writing. Just as her poetry demands distance from personal biography and revelation, it is also deeply affected by her own life story, most profoundly her 38-year tenure as a nun. Throughout her writing career--from her early poems written under the name Sister Mary Gilbert, to her newest ones in which she casts a lifelong glance back through history and lineage--the need to reclaim individual identity is balanced against the relinquishment of the self. From Going Back to the Convent What was I running from or into? The uneasy light of the senior prom? Mother s dream of a a child bride, supported by pennies from heaven? Or was it the writing life laid as a sacrifice to a jealous god on the tomb of the woman I d hoped to become? Whatever it was, it will soon Be over. I write this now to reclaim it. A student of John Berryman, Karl Shapiro, and Robert Fitzgerald, Madeline DeFrees has taught generations of poets and poetry students, and earned widespread acclaim for her own work. Madeline DeFrees has taught throughout the US, including at the University of Montana and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where she directed its Creative Writing program. She presently lives in Seattle, WA. Bookseller Inventory # BTE9781556591662

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