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A Home for Wayward Girls (First Book) Paperback – January 1, 2005

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Boyle's poems are ambitious in form, theme, and style, but never merely egotistical. When they are not singing with a full-throated, operatic grace, they are telling memorable stories." -- Rodney Jones, judge

Review

“Kevin Boyle's poems are ambitious in form, theme, and style, but never merely egotistical. When they are not singing with a full-throated, operatic grace, they are telling memorable stories. But more than that, they answer Milosz's primary challenge for the poetry of our era: they come off as the poetry of only one person. And they do it passionately. A Home for Wayward Girls is a book for grown-ups: charmed, elegant, learned, and wise. It does not read like a project or even faintly resemble a first book. It seems the natural outgrowth of a sensitive and intelligent life.” (Rodney Jones)
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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

  • Series: First Book
  • Paperback: 93 pages
  • Publisher: New Issues Poetry & Prose (January 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1930974493
  • ISBN-13: 978-1930974494
  • Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 0.4 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #439,535 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By N. Smith on April 23, 2005
Format: Paperback
In "A Home for Wayward Girls" (New Issues $14.00), the poet Kevin Boyle takes us on a journey that is as well planned and arranged as an exhibit at the city art museum of Boyle's beloved Philadelphia.

The book begins with poems like "Predilection", a work which teaches the reader to look covertly with overt eyes on the simple other end of simple actions and events. It ceases immediately the idea that a poetry collection should meditate on a theme, and rather throws the whole show in reverse and begs the question of "what would happen if we drove backwards through history? Was it really all about sex and God?"

At the heart of the first poems is a love for the dark beast of sex and how we drape and worship it in flowing robes and then try to undress it with our eyes. Boyle's Catholicism is not left out in the meditation, and these poems question again and again the divinity we find in life's joinings, whether they be physical or spiritual, and whether their deathlessness has really been infused by us.

The collection continues with ideas on the man's role in childbirth and the fact that a man is involved through history and worry, without really being a party to a child's bloody and scientific debut. At the same time, he is unafraid to turn sentimental when writing about the adoption of his daughter, Marina, from the countryside of Russia in the poem, "Russian Child, Nesting Doll."

This collection is the product of someone walking, as closely as possible, the line between the introspective life and the life lived openly, with all of the body ready to be touched with heat or cold.
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