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Lay Back the Darkness: Poems

Edward Hirsch


PUBLISHED: 14th September 2004
ISBN: 9780375710025
ANNOTATION:
Edward Hirsch's sixth collection is a descent into the darkness of middle age, narrated with exacting tenderness. He explores the boundaries of human fallibility both in candid personal poems, such as the title piece—a plea for his father, a victim of Alzheimer's wandering the hallway at night—and in his passionate encounters with classic poetic texts, as when Dante's Inferno enters his bedroom: When you read Canto Five aloud last night in your naked, singsong, fractured Italian, my sweet compulsion, my carnal appetite, for devouring each other body and soul . . . From the lighting of a Yahrzeit candle to the drawings by the children of Terezin, Hirsch longs for transcendence in art and in the troubled history of his faith. In "The Hades Sonnets," the ravishing series that crowns the collection, the poet awakens full of grief in his wife's arms, but here as throughout, there is a luminous forgiveness in his examination of our sorrows. Taken together, these poems offer a profound engagement with our need to capture what is passing (and past) in the incandescence of language. "From the Hardcover edition.
Lay Back the Darkness: Poems
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PUBLISHED: 14th September 2004
ISBN: 9780375710025
ANNOTATION:
Edward Hirsch's sixth collection is a descent into the darkness of middle age, narrated with exacting tenderness. He explores the boundaries of human fallibility both in candid personal poems, such as the title piece—a plea for his father, a victim of Alzheimer's wandering the hallway at night—and in his passionate encounters with classic poetic texts, as when Dante's Inferno enters his bedroom: When you read Canto Five aloud last night in your naked, singsong, fractured Italian, my sweet compulsion, my carnal appetite, for devouring each other body and soul . . . From the lighting of a Yahrzeit candle to the drawings by the children of Terezin, Hirsch longs for transcendence in art and in the troubled history of his faith. In "The Hades Sonnets," the ravishing series that crowns the collection, the poet awakens full of grief in his wife's arms, but here as throughout, there is a luminous forgiveness in his examination of our sorrows. Taken together, these poems offer a profound engagement with our need to capture what is passing (and past) in the incandescence of language. "From the Hardcover edition.

Annotation

Edward Hirsch's sixth collection is a descent into the darkness of middle age, narrated with exacting tenderness. He explores the boundaries of human fallibility both in candid personal poems, such as the title piece—a plea for his father, a victim of Alzheimer's wandering the hallway at night—and in his passionate encounters with classic poetic texts, as when Dante's Inferno enters his bedroom: When you read Canto Five aloud last night in your naked, singsong, fractured Italian, my sweet compulsion, my carnal appetite, for devouring each other body and soul . . . From the lighting of a Yahrzeit candle to the drawings by the children of Terezin, Hirsch longs for transcendence in art and in the troubled history of his faith. In "The Hades Sonnets," the ravishing series that crowns the collection, the poet awakens full of grief in his wife's arms, but here as throughout, there is a luminous forgiveness in his examination of our sorrows. Taken together, these poems offer a profound engagement with our need to capture what is passing (and past) in the incandescence of language.

"From the Hardcover edition.

Publisher Description

Edward Hirsch's sixth collection is a descent into the darkness of middle age, narrated with exacting tenderness. He explores the boundaries of human fallibility both in candid personal poems, such as the title piece—a plea for his father, a victim of Alzheimer's wandering the hallway at night—and in his passionate encounters with classic poetic texts, as when Dante's Inferno enters his bedroom: When you read Canto Five aloud last night in your naked, singsong, fractured Italian, my sweet compulsion, my carnal appetite, I suspected we shall never be forgiven for devouring each other body and soul . . . From the lighting of a Yahrzeit candle to the drawings by the children of Terezin, Hirsch longs for transcendence in art and in the troubled history of his faith. In "The Hades Sonnets," the ravishing series that crowns the collection, the poet awakens full of grief in his wife's arms, but here as throughout, there is a luminous forgiveness in his examination of our sorrows. Taken together, these poems offer a profound engagement with our need to capture what is passing (and past) in the incandescence of language.

"From the Hardcover edition."

Author Biography

Edward Hirsch is the author of six books of poems and three books of prose, among them the national bestseller How to Read a Poem: And Fall in Love with Poetry. He has received the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Prix de Rome, and a MacArthur Fellowship, and is president of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. He lives in New York.

Product Details

Author
Edward Hirsch
Short Title
LAY BACK THE DARKNESS
Pages
88
Publisher
Knopf Publishing Group
Language
English
ISBN-10
0375710027
ISBN-13
9780375710025
Media
Book
Format
Paperback
Year
2004
Publication Date
2004-09-30
Subtitle
Poems
Country of Publication
United States
Residence
TX, US