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Traveling Light: Poems Hardcover


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 77 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company (January 31, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393079074
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393079074
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.7 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #900,873 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Linda Pastan has twice been a finalist for the National Book Award. She lives in Potomac, Maryland.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By K. M. VINE VOICE on July 3, 2011
Format: Hardcover
If every garden dreams of being Eden, heaven on earth, perhaps every poem, every idyll, dreams of capturing some perfection of melded experience, emotion, and illusive truth. The Old Testament is thematically mined herein a few times: Eve is recurring fodder for "story." And Noah's ark salvation is counter pointed against the devastation of virtually all mankind of his time drowning in the deluge.

TRAVELING LIGHT presents verses about nature's blooms and creatures, the passage of time both objective and subjective, loved ones not beside us, and a confluence of ordinary and literary things. Poking fun at her own habitual pre-punctuality, Linda Pastan also ribs a poetry event questioner who haplessly asked, " 'Did you write / your Emily Dickinson poem because you like her work, / or because you know her personally' " but ends up kinder to the other person than to herself. She writes ten poignant lines about September 11 and how it was first an "anniversary / of love" before before "history's dirty thumbprint stain[ed] the calendar." A ghost, lilacs, cows, acorns, Bob Dylan, and time travel all receive the unique attentions of Pastan. So do silence, forests, and Times Square in 1944.

This collection presents commonplace tangibles as signposts to more ephemeral insights. Many poets do the same in their works, but can come across as studied and pretentious. Pastan seems at ease with her craft, as though the poems flow like a bubbling stream. Three stanzas about bread, for instance, fill the reader with a sense of its "perfect tenderness" and agreement that "bread is / the universal language, translatable / on the famished tongue." One cannot be famished after ingesting Pastan's poetic nourishment.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Ellen Rubin on February 6, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Once again, Linda Pastan has given her readers much to ponder and enjoy. The universal appeal of her poetry makes us clamor for more.
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By Evan Frankl on December 8, 2013
Format: Paperback
I do not pretend to have a great appreciation for poetry, and received this book from a friend. However, out of 60 or so poems, I count 8 as deeply moving. Ms. Pastan clearly deserves the awards and accolades that she has received in the past few years.
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