Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Image not available

To view this video download Flash Player


Sign in to turn on 1-Click ordering
More Buying Choices
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Tell the Publisher!
I'd like to read this book on Kindle

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

Peeping Tom's Cabin: Comic Verse 1928-2008 (American Poets Continuum) [Paperback]

X.J. Kennedy
2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

List Price: $17.00
Price: $16.15 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
You Save: $0.85 (5%)
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
Only 2 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.
Want it Monday, July 14? Choose One-Day Shipping at checkout. Details
Free Two-Day Shipping for College Students with Amazon Student


Amazon Price New from Used from
Hardcover $19.80  
Paperback $16.15  
New Adult Fiction by Rainbow Rowell
Acclaimed author Rainbow Rowell's latest book, Landline, offers a poignant, humorous look at relationships and marriage. Learn more

Book Description

September 1, 2007 1929918968 978-1929918966

“X. J. Kennedy’s well-known travels between the realms of the comic and the serious qualify him for dual citizenship in the world of poetry. Here, the playful is on full display in verse not just ‘light’ but bright and delightful.”—Billy Collins

Peeping Tom’s Cabin is the first full-length collection of light verse for adults composed by one of America’s most celebrated poets. An uncompromising formalist, Kennedy uses a broad range of longstanding poetic forms, including limerick, nursery rhyme, ballad, rhymed epitaph, and clerihew. This collection includes many poems previously published in poetry and popular journals, including The Sewanee Review, The Atlantic Monthly, The New Yorker, and Poetry. These poems honor and skewer all classes of citizen, regardless of their revered place in society. Parents, lovers, poetry critics, students, and especially notable literary figures receive Kennedy’s astute comic attention.

“To Someone Who Insisted I Look Up Someone”

I rang them up while touring Timbuktu,
Those bosom chums to whom you’re known as “Who?”

X. J. Kennedy has published six collections of verse, including Nude Descending a Staircase, which received the Lamont Award from the Academy of American Poets. His newest collection, The Lords of Misrule, received the 2004 Poets’ Prize. Kennedy has also authored eighteen children’s books and several textbooks on fiction and poetry. Other recognitions include the Los Angeles Book Award for Poetry, the Aiken-Taylor Award, and Guggenheim and National Arts Council fellowships. Kennedy was also given the first Michael Braude Award for light verse by the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters.

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Accompanying Kennedy's forthcoming selected (serious) poems, this agreeably cantankerous, occasionally laugh-out-loud-funny volume gathers brief parodies, barbed rhymes, naughty couplets and other assorted not-so-serious verse, dating (despite the title) from 1956 to the present. Kennedy serves up, among other poems, 46 limericks, 19 clerihews, assorted off-color jokes, rewritten popular songs from the pre-rock era (Suburban lawns with moles,/ Things full of holes/ Remind me of you) and Mary Had a Little Lamb rewritten in the style of Sylvia Plath. Kennedy (The Lords of Misrule) also offers ghastly brats (poems too grisly for, but otherwise suited to, his three collections of children's verse) and a portrait of Sigmund Freud as Santa Claus. The volume seems less substantial than most collections of light verse (perhaps because Kennedy's greatest wits have been relegated to a companion volume); some of the jokes about sex and drink sound dated. Yet this lighter side of Kennedy should please fans of John Updike's verse or of the line of mid-century upscale rhyming—from Cole Porter to the New Yorker—to which most of these poems belong. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

X.J. Kennedy has published eight previous collections of poetry; nineteen children's books, including Brats and Exploding Gravy; and one novel, The Owlstone Crown. His textbooks have been taught to more than four million students. He was the first recipient of the Michael Braude award for light verse by the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters.

Product Details

  • Series: American Poets Continuum (Book 105)
  • Paperback: 120 pages
  • Publisher: BOA Editions Ltd. (September 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1929918968
  • ISBN-13: 978-1929918966
  • Product Dimensions: 0.3 x 6.2 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,415,798 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

2.5 out of 5 stars
2.5 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent traditional comic verse February 16, 2013
X. J. Kennedy is well known as a formalist poet, that is, one who writes in traditional strong metrical or stanzaic forms. His comic verse is traditionalist not only in form, but also in mood and content: it is part of tradition of what you might call, paradoxically, "serious comic verse" which goes back through Swift to Martial and Juvenal in ancient Rome. Such verse is essentially satire, but not in the recent sense of the term, which has come to mean mocking some other form of literature. This older type of satire, though it aims to be funny, also makes an implicit social or moral criticism. It's characterized by a particular sort of intellectual humor which used to be called "wit," often makes use of learned allusions, and is frequently suggestive and occasionally outright obscene.

The poems in this book are excellent examples of this sort of verse, and will please anyone who is interested in the genre. But don't be misled by the phrase "comic verse" into thinking these are the sort of "pop" light, wry verses you might occasionally find in a newspaper or non-literary magazine. They are serious literature in the sense I've described, and (although the author also has a reputation as a children's writer) certainly not for children.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
1 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Trashy February 25, 2008
I heard this reviewed on NPR and got it for my 80 year old mother who likes funny poetry. I obviously didn't investigate it enough and will never go on public radio alone for a reference. I never gave it to my mom, not what I was looking for.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Search Customer Reviews
Search these reviews only

Sell a Digital Version of This Book in the Kindle Store

If you are a publisher or author and hold the digital rights to a book, you can sell a digital version of it in our Kindle Store. Learn more


There are no discussions about this product yet.
Be the first to discuss this product with the community.
Start a new discussion
First post:
Prompts for sign-in

Look for Similar Items by Category