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100 Essential Modern Poems by Women Hardcover – April 4, 2008
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Parisi, former editor of Poetry magazine, covers a gratifying stretch of literary and social terrain in his lively introduction to this distinctive anthology. Not only does he discuss the major contributions women poets have made to modern English-language poetry in terms of formal innovation but he also traces the link between changes in women’s lives and liberating poetic experimentation and self-expression. And the explication does not end there. Parisi and coeditor Welton provide strikingly descriptive, genuinely informative, and zestfully interpretative profiles of each poet, from trailblazers Emily Dickinson, Amy Lowell (a large woman with large ambitions), and Mina Loy to Edna St. Vincent Millay, Elizabeth Bishop, down-to-earth New Zealander Fleur Adcock, Amy Clampitt, Sharon Olds (notable for her brave if often painful candor), Lucille Clifton (who writes in a minimalist style to maximum effect), Ellen Bryant Voight (a well-grounded poet), and Louise Erdrich. The 100 diverse and dynamic poets are splendidly well chosen, as are the poems, creating an unusually useful and pleasurable volume that can serve as both primer and catalyst to further reading. --Donna Seaman
The fifty women whose work is represented here form a mighty and complex chain of voices extending from the anchor of Emily Dickinson to the thrum of the contemporary. This is a smart, handy anthology, essential, indeed, to anyone's library. And it's no surprise that these poets seem to be getting along just fine without the usual male suspects shouldering against them on the page. (Billy Collins)
What makes the poets in this book so remarkable is not their gender but their genius. From the metaphysical shocks of Emily Dickinson to the bleak wit of Dorothy Parker to the wise meditations of Jane Kenyon, 100 Essential Modern Poems by Women contains poem after poem that no lover of modern poetry would want to live without. (Adam Kirsch )
The editors have made a fine selection, with illuminating notes and background material. This volume is a pleasure to read and to own. (Brooke Allen)
Through his illuminating and informative literary biographies and astute selection of poems, the distinguished editor and critic Joseph Parisi has encapsulated a literary age in a manner worthy of Dr. Johnson. (Paula Deitz The Hudson Review)
Unusually useful and pleasurable volume...covers a gratifying stretch of literary and social terrain. (Donna Seaman Booklist)
From Gwendolyn Brooks’ rhythmic reflections on Chicago’s South Side to Linda Pastan’s direct musings on a high-school reunion, you’re bound to find a bit of yourself between the lines—we did. (Chicago Magazine)
Have you ever wanted to immerse yourself in lavish language and brilliant verse, but haven't a clue where to start? Whether it's your first time delving into poetic masterpieces or if you're familiar with the greats included in the collection, this book is for you. (Today's Chicago Woman)
The anthology combines masterworks by a wide range of fascinating authors.…They address timeless topics of love, family, friendship, war, nature, self-determination, and life in the modern world. (Washington Post)