In the Next Galaxy

In the Next Galaxy

Book - 2002
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Ruth Stone has rightly been called America's Akhmatova, and she is considered "Mother Poet" to many contemporary writers. In this, her eighth volume, she writes with crackling intelligence, interrogating history from the vantage point of an aging and impoverished woman. Wise, sardonic, crafty, and misleadingly simple, Stone loves heavy themes but loathes heavy poems.

Shapes

In the longer view it doesn't matter.
However, it's that having lived, it matters.
So that every death breaks you apart.
You find yourself weeping at the door
of your own kitchen, overwhelmed
by loss. And you find yourself weeping
as you pass the homeless person
head in hands resigned on a cement
step, the wire basket on wheels right there.
Like stopped film, or a line of Vallejo,
or a sketch of the mechanics of a wing
by Leonardo. All pauses in space,
a violent compression of meaning
in an instant within the meaningless.
Even staring into the dim shapes
at the farthest edge; accepting that blur.

"Ruth Stone's work is alternately witty, bawdy, touching, and profound. But never pompous. Her honesty and originality give her writing a sense of youth and newness because she looks at the world so clearly, without all the detritus of social convention the rest of us pick up along the way... Her writing proves her to be simply inspired."-- USA Today

Ruth Stone was born in Virginia in 1915. She is author of eight books of poems and recipient of the National Book Critics Circle Award. In 1959, after her husband committed suicide, she was forced to raise three daughters alone. For twenty years she traveled the US, teaching creative writing at many universities, finally settling at SUNY Binghamton. She lives in Vermont.

Publisher: Port Townsend, Wash. : Copper Canyon Press, [2002]
Copyright Date: ©2002
ISBN: 9781556591785
1556591780
Branch Call Number: 811.54 STO
Characteristics: x, 99 pages ;,24 cm

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j
jannylegs
Jul 11, 2016

Fantabulous. Want to read more of her work. Title poem is especially great, as are "Shapes" and "Poems."

j
joliebergman
Oct 15, 2014

I wish I had liked this one more.

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