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When a Woman Loves a Man: Poems Paperback – April 12, 2005


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Scribner (April 12, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743255941
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743255943
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.4 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,489,835 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Lehman's latest amply demonstrates his formal and prosodic range as well as his unstinting loyalty to the tones, predispositions, prejudices and forms of the New York School of poets, particularly Ashbery, O'Hara and Koch. The autobiographical "Wittgenstein's Ladder," "In Freud's House" and "The Code of Napoleon" are distinctive, Mel Brooks–like summations of their subjects, foregrounding Lehman's strengths as a writer—his humor, compact and direct syntax and easy musicality—simply by presenting them through the prism of historical subject matter: "He's the shortest man in the room, the only one who thinks / He is Adolf Hitler. Everyone else is Napoleon." "Jew You" features a litany of slanders gut-wrenching in their pain and humor, and it ends on a nice twist: "...and when Lionel Trilling asked Allen Ginsberg why he, a fellow Jew, / had written 'fuck the Jews' in his dorm room window, / Ginsberg sighed: 'It's very complicated.' Now there was a Jew." Lehman cannot "take wing" the way his hero-poets did in the '50s not only because he lacks the spirit of the enigma – the Surrealist aspect of New York School hijinks eludes him – but simply because he doesn't seem to like his time very much. (Apr.)
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Review

"Very few writers can actually shape how you see the world. David Lehman is such a writer. His poetry rides the currents of the zeitgeist in ways that are deeply influential. And if you let him alter you, he confers something like peace upon you, for in Lehman the darkest moments are always a beat away from laughter and the lightest things are always going dark around the edges. What strange and profound comfort that is. When a Woman Loves a Man is a truly important collection."
-- Robert Olen Butler, author of A Good Scent from a Strange Mountain

"In David Lehman's poem 'A History of Modern Poetry,' he writes, 'the idea was to have a voice of your own, / distinctive, sounding like nobody else's / The result was that everybody sounded alike.' This may well be true, but Lehman's 'everybody' voice still sounds uniquely his: wisecracking but resonant with the pleasures of poetry."
-- John Ashbery

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By T. P. Winch on July 5, 2005
Format: Paperback
Central to Lehman's work is a radical playfulness, an essential ingredient of great poetry. He is one of the U.S.'s most inventive writers, particularly in his use of traditional and sui generis forms. Plus, he is funny, which,in a literary world where often only deadly seriousness will win you any respect, can sometimes be a strike against a poet. Read "The Gift," "Wittgenstein's Ladder," "Psalm," "Six Almonds," and "The James Brothers" to see what I mean. Since John Ashbery revitalized the sestina with his "Farm Implements and Rutabagas in a Landscape," included in his 1970 book The Double Dream of Spring, sestinas have become all the rage. Lehman is one of the most accomplished practitioners of this exacting form, as the brilliant "Big Hair" and "Sestina," from this new colection, demonstrate. This is Lehman's best book of poems.
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By Charles Rodby on August 6, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am pretty picky about poets but the title poem really tugged at me. It borderlines on misogynistic until I realized that I feel that same way in my irrational moments. I can't but help to feel a little possessive. Lehman manages to address gender differences without marginalizing. I bought a second copy for a buddy in afghanistan when he was missing his lady, he appreciated it as well.
If you would like to know something specific about this item just ask and I'll try to respond within a day or so.
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By J. Samson on January 23, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Clever, moving poetry. Good collection. That's all. Done. Okay, guys. Bye! Bye! Bye! Bye! Bye! Bye!
Bye! Bye! Bye! Bye....
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