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The Bird Catcher (SIGNED)

Ponsot, Marie

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ISBN 10: 0375401350 / ISBN 13: 9780375401350
Published by New Millennium Books, New York City, 1998
Condition: Fine Hardcover
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Rob Warren Books
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About this Item

Winner of National Book Critics Circle Award. Signed with her tiny handwriting. An excellent copy. Bookseller Inventory # 000827

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Bird Catcher (SIGNED)

Publisher: New Millennium Books, New York City

Publication Date: 1998

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition: Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Fine

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title


In 1998, Marie Ponsot was awarded the National Book Critics Circle Award for poetry, confirming the praise that has been bestowed on her by critics and peers--among them Eavan Boland and Carolyn Kizer (who are quoted on the back of the book jacket) and Amy Clampitt, who had this to say of Ponsot's last book: "She is marvelously attuned to the visual and to the audible. She is no less precisely a geographer of the interior life, above all the experience of being a woman."


Marie Ponsot is a subtle, delicate, and yet oddly assertive poet. Again and again in The Bird Catcher, she approaches experience with a kind of reasonable trepidation. Yet she always does what is necessary--as protagonist and poet--to elicit a spiritual insight. Braving the elements seems to be second nature to her. And in this volume, she's consumed by one element in particular: water. In "Separate in the Swim," for example, she can't resist the ocean's allure, despite her terror of "the aim of wave, the idea / that picks up the water / and throws it at the shore." Yet this terror is also a prelude to a vision of oneness:

Each stroke starts a far drumming
clumping the kelp, helping
shells and rubbish decay into sand.

In this stretch of the Atlantic
the whole Atlantic operates.

As I ride, its broad cast evokes
my tiny unity, a pod, a person.

Thanks to the closure of skin
I'm forking the tune I'm part of
though my part is played moving
on a different instrument.

In every poem in the collection, Marie Ponsot functions as an explorer, relentlessly mapping one piece of terra incognita after another. A linguistic delight, The Bird Catcher is also an invitation to voyage into the inner and outer wilderness. --Mark Rudman

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