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A New Path to the Waterfall Paperback – January 13, 1994

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A New Path to the Waterfall + All of Us: The Collected Poems + What We Talk About When We Talk About Love: Stories
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Carver, who died in 1988, wrote these poems during his last g months. "Many of them are luminous flashes, poised and tender meditations, while others read like cathartic, unresolved statements by a man struggling to come to terms with his life in the little remaining time allotted to him," found PW.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Though Carver is generally acknowledged to be a master of the short story, his first published work was poetry, and this collection, his last work, was completed shortly before his untimely death. His poetry is as recognizably his own as his stories and like them evokes depths of meaning beneath a surface simplicity. In her moving introduction, Carver's widow, writer Tess Gallagher, notes how often a particular poem calls to mind a corresponding story, and the reverse is also true. Indeed, to know Carver by his prose is to know him only partially. Master at illuminating those often mundane moments that starkly dramatize entire lives, Carver was also master at creating mood, and many of these poems have a striking lyrical intensity, especially when Carver unflinchingly faces death while celebrating life. A coda to a remarkable literary career.
- Charles Michaud, Turner Free Lib., Randolph, Mass.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Atlantic Monthly Press; Reprint edition (January 13, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0871133741
  • ISBN-13: 978-0871133748
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.5 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #505,948 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Raymond Carver was born in Clatskanie, Oregon, in 1938. His father was a saw-mill worker and his mother was a waitress and clerk. He married early and for years writing had to come second to earning a living for his young family. Despite, small-press publication, it was not until Will You Please Be Quiet Please? appeared in 1976 that his work began to reach a wider audience. This was the year in which he gave up alcohol, which had contributed to the collapse of his marriage. In 1977 he met the writer Tess Gallagher, with whom he shared the last eleven years of his life. During this prolific period he wrote three collections of stories, What We Talk About When We Talk About Love, Cathedral and Elephant. Fires, a collection of essays, poems and stories, appeared in 1985, followed by three further collections of poetry. In 1988 he completed the poetry collection A New Path to the Waterfall.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Shalom Freedman HALL OF FAME on April 5, 2005
Format: Paperback
This is Raymond Carver's last collection of poems. It was put together with the help of the love and companion of the last eleven years of his life, the writer Tess Gallagher. She also includes a long introduction to the work explaining the process of the book's making.

Carver is a poet of directness, simplicity, emotional courage. His poems are often stories built around direct observations or statements of his present mood, a mood that is also reflective on other times of life. The poems which I believe are most moving often have to do with relationships, with his father, with his former wife, with his children.

His world is often a disordered and painful one, the alcoholic's world , the world of those in debt and down. But there is in him almost always a redemptive appreciation of life, a certain hidden joy and emotional surprise which gives the poems their special life.

Among the beautiful poems of this work is one called 'Cherish' in which he tells of the tenderness in his relationship with Tess Gallagher.

I was very moved by the last poem , a fragment that sums up the man and the redemptive power of his work.

LATE FRAGMENT

And did you get what

you wanted from this life, even so?

I did.

And what did you want?

To call myself beloved, to feel myself

beloved on the earth.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Kaiteri on October 24, 1999
Format: Paperback
I've read this book a number of times now and it never fails to move me deeply. The 14 page introduction by Tess Gallagher, a touching account Carver's final months and their efforts to compile this collection in the face of his impending death, brings the poems to life and gives them an added urgency and passionate clear sightedness. At times ironic, at times a sardonic observor of life's foibles, and at times utterly transparent and vulnerable, Carver is never less than a great crafter of poetic visions.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Dorion Sagan on February 11, 2003
Format: Paperback
Raymond Carver, whom I had the fortuitous pleasure of having lunch with, along with his girfriend Tess Gallagher, a couple of years before he died, was a true artist. Emily Dickinson puts poets above the sun and God in pantheon of what's most important, and people like Raymond Carver prove her right. Although this last offering by the 20th century's greatest minimalist writer is neither his greatest nor his most minimal, it strikes the same generous chord of longing, of heart warming simplicity and heart breaking honesty, that Carver strikes elsewhere. The style is the man, wrote Buffon (in French), and sure enough that is the case here: a style of simple emotional honesty, combined with an artist's experimental will to playfulness, sufffused with a hope whose transcendent beauty is precisely its distillation from the undoctored elements of ordinary reality. This book, enhanced and completed by Tess Gallagher's wonderfully loving but unsentimental introduction, shows Carver at the end of his life; still excited about art, and the possibility of the poem form, he splices lines from Chekov stories, giving them titles and thereby
transforming them into poem epigraphs to his own measured prose. The transformation of the Chekov short story to the Carver poem perhaps underscores the poetic process itself, whittling down reality into its artistic essence--the process so aptly demonstrated by Carver, who never wrote a novel, in his short stories. As Salmon Rushdie says on the cover (I paraphrase), read this book by Carver. Read everything by Carver. Raymond Carver was a great writer.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Dorion Sagan on February 11, 2003
Format: Paperback
Raymond Carver, whom I had the fortuitous pleasure of having lunch with, along with his girfriend Tess Gallagher, a couple of years before he died, was a true artist. Emily Dickinson puts poets above the sun and God in pantheon of what's most important, and people like Raymond Carver prove her right. Although this last offering by the 20th century's greatest minimalist writer is neither his greatest nor his most minimal, it strikes the same generous chord of longing, of heart warming simplicity and heart breaking honesty, that Carver strikes elsewhere. The style is the man, wrote Buffon (in French), and sure enough that is the case here: a style of simple emotional honesty, combined with an artist's experimental will to playfulness, sufffused with a hope whose transcendent beauty is precisely its distillation from the undoctored elements of ordinary reality. This book, enhanced and completed by Tess Gallagher's wonderfully loving but unsentimental introduction, shows Carver at the end of his life; still excited about art, and the possibility of the poem form, he splices lines from Chekov stories, giving them titles and thereby
transforming them into poem epigraphs to his own measured prose. The transformation of the Chekov short story to the Carver poem perhaps underscores the poetic process itself, whittling down reality into its artistic essence--the process so aptly demonstrated by Carver, who never wrote a novel, in his short stories. As Salmon Rushdie says on the cover (I paraphrase), read this book by Carver. Read everything by Carver. Raymond Carver was a great writer.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 24, 1999
Format: Paperback
this is real poetry. raymond carver is a reflective and insightful poet. there is no denying his powerful way with words. there is a warmth and closeness to his tales that seem painfully close to real life, to our lives. there are also verses by Chekov who is just incredible. i can not describe the visions speaking in this book. But they move and surge and plunge into your heart and speak clearly.
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