Wednesday, May 07, 2008

The Poem and the Journey

Evan Jameson recommends Ruth Padel's book The Poem and the Journey (and sixty poems to read along the way); click here for more, from Padel's own site. This is a kind of sequel to her 52 Ways of Looking at a Poem. Among the 60 poems are analyses of 'Brazil, January 1, 1502' by Elizabeth Bishop, 'Blackbird' by R.S. Thomas, 'Serious' by James Fenton and 'Child Burial' by Paula Meehan.

Evan writes :

And suddenly, poetry is hugely popular! More and more people attend readings; anthologies of favourite poems top best-seller lists. Collections with titles like Staying Alive: Real Poems for Unreal Times and One Hundred Poems to Keep You Sane testify to a growing belief that poems provide some kind of respite from the frequently bewildering pace and complexity of the twenty-first century world. Ruth Padel’s The Poem and the Journey is the latest attempt to promote poetry as a worthwhile place to spend a few minutes of one’s day. But it goes a step further than its predecessors by investigating the complex constructions of well-crafted verse.

Read Evan's full detailed review here.

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