Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

  • List Price: $24.00
  • Save: $6.64 (28%)
FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
The Art of Losing: Poems ... has been added to your Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Ships direct from Amazon! Qualifies for Prime Shipping and FREE standard shipping for orders over $35. Overnight and 2 day shipping available!
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

The Art of Losing: Poems of Grief and Healing Hardcover – March 16, 2010

4.7 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

See all 6 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$17.36
$13.09 $1.00

Best Books of the Year So Far
Looking for something great to read? Browse our editors' picks for the Best Books of the Year So Far in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.
$17.36 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. In Stock. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • The Art of Losing: Poems of Grief and Healing
  • +
  • Book of Hours: Poems
Total price: $39.62
Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Young (Dear Darkness) is not only a prolific and acclaimed poet, but also the editor of several anthologies of poems, by African-American poets, inspired by the blues and jazz, and from the body of work by John Berryman. This latest anthology is his most topical, and, perhaps, his most useful, gathering poems about suffering and overcoming loss. Organized around subjects such as Regret, Remembrance, and Ritual, this book includes poets both canonical and contemporary, with perhaps a refreshingly larger helping of the latter: poets like Marianne More, Philip Larkin, and Elizabeth Bishop join newer names like D.A. Powell, Matthew Dickman, and Meghan O'Rourke; there are also plenty of reigning masters, like Louise Glück. Death is nature's way/ of telling you to be quiet, writes Franz Wright, somewhat harshly. With calmer acceptance, Theodore Roethke reminds us of the need to wake to sleep, and take my waking slow. While these poems won't offer easy answers to grief, they will keep the kind of company that only poetry can, because only poetry can convincingly say, as Ruth Stone does in the last poem of this book, All things come to an end./ No, they go on forever. (Mar.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Poet Young, author of six vividly imagined collections, puts on his editor’s hat, one he wears well in previous anthologies dedicated to blues and jazz poems as well as here in this unique and invaluable gathering of contemporary poems of grief and healing. This effort stems from his memorializing his late father in Dear Darkness (2008), a loss that sharpened his perceptions of what Young cites as “a poetry of necessity.” As he observes, “No one wants to write an elegy.” But “we simply must.” And in writing, reading, and listening to elegies, understanding, solidarity, and solace are found. Young offers an original and personal analysis of the modern elegy, and uses his own experience with the cycle of mourning to structure the book in sections titled “Reckoning,” “Regret,” “Remembrance,” “Ritual,” “Recovery,” and “Redemption.” And the poems are as diverse and universal as the emotions of loss. Poems by Dylan Thomas, Sharon Olds, Mary Jo Bang, Nick Flynn, Natasha Trethewey, Cornelius Eady, Gerald Stern, Lucille Clifton, and many others exquisitely and empathically translate pain into beauty, sorrow into catharsis. --Donna Seaman
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent novel chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury USA; 1 edition (March 16, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1608190331
  • ISBN-13: 978-1608190331
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.2 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #346,013 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I wasn't surprised when I heard that Bloomsbury had asked poet Kevin Young to edit an anthology of "poems of grief and healing." After all, his book, "Dear Darkness" (written following the death of the poet's father) was filled with nuanced and human poems tackling his grief & celebrating the life of his father in surprising and honest ways.

Still, "The Art of Losing" exceeded my expectations of what this collection would be.

Firstly, I had to admire the wide range of poets: works by old standards like Emily Dickson, Dylan Thomas and Robert Frost, sit next to works newly minted legends Anne Sexton, John Berryman and Frank O'Hara, which are found next to contemporary favorites like Billy Collins, Sharon Olds and Mary Oliver, which are published next to young modern poets Nick Flynn, Elizabeth Alexander and Terrance Hayes.

Next, I was grateful for the full spectrum of grief that this book showcased. The book isn't filled only with poems politely eulogizing the newly sainted dead. No: there are poems which unapologetically wrestle sadness, frustration and anger. There are poems which celebrate, which brighten, which make us laugh. There are poems about the long dead, the newly passed and the people who are fading in front of us. It's not a book reserved only for the newly grieving, but a book for anyone who has experienced a loss at any time... in other words, a book for everyone.

And lastly, I was impressed by the structure of the anthology. Young did a great job of placing the pieces together in a way that made sense, but that wasn't blatant. The poems are divided into six sections: "Reckoning," "Regret," "Remembrance," Ritual," Recovery" and "Redemption.
Read more ›
Comment 65 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
This book is a beautiful and diverse anthology that is well deserving of any praise it is sure to receive. I would especially recommend it to anyone trying to find comfort in grieving the loss of loved one. Often grief feels solitary: no one else knows what this feels like, no one has been through it before. This book will prove to any reader that loss and pain is universal... and why not learn that lesson by reading these words and emotions so exquisitely expressed?
Comment 26 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
This is an exceptional book. I am a physician whose father recently died. A friend gave me this book to help with my grief. A sentence in the introduction consoled me first: "Indeed, it is too often that death clarifies a love that was there all along." Then I read "The Race" by Sharon Olds about a woman who races to get on a flight to reach her dying father after the first flight is cancelled. I sobbed, knowing how she ached to be there with him and to feel the relief of having "walked into his room and watched his chest rise slowly and sink again, all night I watched him breathe." I am buying a copy of this book for my nurse who just lost her mother and will do this for the many behind us who will lose someone dear. I was interested to see how many poems there were on losing a father (twice as many as for the loss of a mother). Perhaps Kevin Young, having lost his father, was particularly drawn to these....or perhaps fathers are so perplexing that we need the "poetry of necessity" to guide us. Many thanks to Kevin Young for this book. (Hint to Kevin: have a place on your website for people to express their thanks.)
Comment 10 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I wanted to read this collection of poems after hearing the author on a NPR broadcast. He was sincere without being sentimental, His thoughts went directly to the feelings you feel and can't express.I suffered the loss of a loved one and it's hard enough to deal with your emotions and then try to convey to those near you what you are thinking and feeling. It's enormous. This book carefully and sensitively puts into words what many of us need to release as we struggle through this common experience.
Comment 7 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
What a wonderful condolence gift this book would be. These poems should be shared at funerals and wakes or read privately through the months of heartache. Poetry lovers will want this book on their home shelf to enjoy again and again. Kevin Young’s Book of Hours showed the world his gift for putting eulogy and grief on paper, and he used that insight in editing this collection. At the best funerals, we remember our loved ones with both tears and laughter, and these poems contain that wholeness of being human.

Too many anthologies go back to the same old, same old, dead, white male poets and poems that are dense with dated language. Young chose to focus on more accessible, more relevant, and more modern poems. With only a few exceptions, he pulled together twentieth and twenty-first century poems. For once, women and minority writers are well represented. There’s something everyone can relate to.

Many of my favorite poems are here: “Otherwise” and “Let Evening Come” by Jane Kenyon, “Funeral Blues” by W. H. Auden, “Wild Geese” and by Mary Oliver, “Mourners” by Ted Kooser, “Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night” by Dylan Thomas, and for a smile, “The Dead” by Billy Collins. With nearly 300 pages of poetry, Young was able to cover an incredible range. You’re sure to meet some authors you don’t know well. There’s also a convenient index by subject to help those searching for a single-poem to read at a service or send to a friend.
Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

The Art of Losing: Poems of Grief and Healing
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: The Art of Losing: Poems of Grief and Healing