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A Good High School Primer for Poetry
on November 18, 2012
I read the majority of this book looking for the 'extraordinary'. They were pleasing poems at best but nothing groundbreaking or wonderful. I appreciate what Collins is doing for poetry, he himself writes fun, clever and accessible poetry. But nothing memorable in my mind.
And this book is just that - nothing memorable. I would give it as a gift to a high schooler with interest in English literature and poetry with the caveat that there is better writing out there, greater poets, greater, more 'extraordinary' poems. This is a nice book but safe and at times, yes, a little boring.
The majority of poets in here are professors and teachers of creative writing. They really write for each other. The general public can read these accessible poems but nothing stays, I find. It's great something like this exists but being a reader of poetry for almost twenty years, I was a little disappointed.
I would give this 2 and 1/2 stars but I can't. I don't want to give it two either. Sharon Olds is here, Katia Kapovich, Margaret Atwood and some other great international poets but overall the collection is fairly bland.
I suppose I have to consider the audience, that it was intended for high schools. For those looking for a greater, wider-ranging anthology, check out The Vintage Book of Contemporary World Poetry. Something with more substance.
I'm sure this review I have just now written is not going to go over well with those enamored with this book or want to be.