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.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ Free Shipping
Field Guide to the End of the World: Poems Paperback – September 1, 2016
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
About the Author
Jeannine Hall Gailey served as second poet laureate of Redmond, Washington. She’s the author of four previous books of poetry: Becoming the Villainess, She Returns to the Floating World, Unexplained Fevers, and The Robot Scientist’s Daughter.
Browse award-winning titles. See more
Top customer reviews
Field Guide to the End of the World is the darkest of Gailey's collections, surveying apocalypses great and small, global and personal. Despite this, there is still humor, still an appreciation for the beauty of life, still, even, hope. Postcards dot the collection like bread crumbs, and if you follow them you can find a single story through the destruction, the hopeless and unquenchable story of one lover writing to another although there is no longer a postal system, a government, even an address remaining. The end of days, Gailey prompts us, is not about dying. It is about life, and how it is lived.
Read the full review: [...]
Field Guide to the End of the World is Ms. Gailey’s fifth poetry book. I have read The Robot Scientist’s Daughter, and thought I knew what I was getting into with her newest (oldest?) book. Ah, but while there are similarities, the author has let her playful side out to romp through the debris of our final days.
The book sorts poems into groupings, which is nice for slipping into a frame of mind and lingering there a while. My favorite section, and I am pretty sure many readers will agree with this, is “Cultural Anthropology”. It’s a bit like reading the literary version of a Mystery Science Theater 3000 episode, while watching the Food Channel on the side and sneaking peeks over to Netflix. The name that pops out of the poetry listings immediately, is, of course, Wile E. Coyote (super genius), who’s been living in a post-apocaplyse world since most of us wore footed jammies. Who better to enlist than this ill-fed quasi-predator to be one of the guides on our journey? As it turns out, that guide is as lost as the rest of us, but we can take comfort in wandering in circles together.
My personal favorite is “Letter to John Cusack, Piloting a Plane in an Apocalypse Movie”. Take some time to linger on each phrase, and remember. As the saying goes, you’ll laugh, you’ll cry, it will become a part of you. Actually, it already was, you just needed open eyes to see it.
But I didn’t simply hunker down (though hunkering down during the end days certainly has its merit) in the ‘funny’ chapter. Emotionally, I am still returning often to the “End Times Eschatology” chapter to re-read and re-experience how the end of the world will feel for others. The practical ones, the romantics, the selfless and the selfish, the god-fearers, mistake makers, job hunters. As humanity shares a singular ultimate fate, we approach it from so many diverse roads. There are as many ways to face the end as there are quirks and differences between one person and the next.
I highly recommend you take a field guide with you on your own personal journey.