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Kabir: Ecstatic Poems by [Bly, Robert]
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Kabir: Ecstatic Poems Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews

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Length: 128 pages Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled Page Flip: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Kabir's poems give off a marvelous radiant intensity that never fails…they have exactly the luminous depth that permits and invites many rereadings.—Hayden Carruth, New York Times Book Review

"One of the luminous experiences of American poetry… Kabir is a poet who connects the modes of thinking, feeling, intuition and sensation at every turn of thought and phrase."—Jonathan Cott, Rolling Stone

"Robert Bly earns the thanks of us all. I, for one, will reread [Bly's Kabir] often. Kabir can be seen as a welcome member to that brotherhood of mystic American poets, novelists and painters."—Paul Carroll, The American Poetry Review

"Without Bly, modern American poetry would be unrecognizable in its current form. Without his poems, his translations, and his devotion to poetry, American literature would have taken a different turn in its rich and influential history." —Ray González, The Bloomsbury Review

About the Author

Robert Bly has earned many honors for his original poems, which include The Winged Energy of Delight, and for his translations of twenty-two poets, including Kabir. He is the author of the bestseller Iron John, and with Jane Hirshfield has published a new translation of Mirabai (Beacon / 6386-6 / $16.00).

Product Details

  • File Size: 4127 KB
  • Print Length: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Beacon Press (August 1, 2011)
  • Publication Date: August 1, 2011
  • Sold by: Penguin Random House Publisher Services
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005FFV2MK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #538,998 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Beautiful translation of one of my favorite mystic poets! Robert Bly's translation of Kabir allows us to experience this mystic poet in a personal way without losing any of the beauty of the poetry. Really enjoyed this book.
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Format: Hardcover
It's so hard to find WISDOM these days...
not "moral/ethical" wisdom, or "financial" wisdom,
but ECSTATIC WISDOM.
So few people are interested in the subject of
actually experiencing divine ecstasy...they're too
tied down by dogma, worship of imagery & robotic
ceremonies, etc. That's why this Kabir book by Mr. Bly
is so refreshing...like a real literary Oasis.
It's LOADED with wisdom of the divine ecstasy kind.
I don't care about any translation controversies...
I just approach the book as its own entity...and
understand the ecstatic wisdom it radiates.
I want to thank Mr. Bly for producing this book of
ecstatic wisdom poetry...there's so little of it
available. THANK YOU MR. BLY.
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Format: Hardcover
Indeed these poems are of such a depth that it is difficult to render their content. Let's say it's the Sufi tradition in full. Just glimpses of the Absolute Truth expressed in words. Let the power of the sound embrace your whole being. Excellent!
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Format: Paperback
Good that we are getting exposed to the name of Kabir. But... These in the main are not genuine Kabir poems nor represent accurately his message.
They are not even translations of inauthentic Kabir poems.
These are Robert Bly's modernised 'versions' of Tagore's English translation from a Bengali translation of inauthentic Kabir poems.
It appears to be a particularly modern and peculiar self-deceit -- when we have the option now of knowing all this to a degree not possible in previous centuries -- to pass these off to ourselves and each other as accurately representing the thought of the iconoclastic fifteenth century weaver of Varanasi.

Tagore:
------------------
O servant, where dost thou seek Me? Lo! I am beside thee.
I am neither in temple nor in mosque: I am neither in Kaaba nor in Kailash.
Neither am I in rites and ceremonies, nor in Yoga and renunciation.
If thou art a true seeker, thou shalt at once see Me: thou shalt meet Me in a moment of time.
Kabir says, "O Sadhu! God is the breath of all breath."

Bly:
------------------
Are you looking for me? I am in the next seat.
My shoulder is against yours.
you will not find me in the stupas, not in Indian shrine rooms,
nor in synagogues, nor in cathedrals: not in masses, nor kirtans.
Not in legs winding around your own neck, nor in eating nothing but vegetables.
When you really look for me, you will see me instantly -
you will find me in the tiniest house of time.
Kabir says: Student, tell me, what is God?
He is the breath inside the breath."

So just be aware that this book is a distortion twice removed from Kabir's own poetic compositions.
Read more ›
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Format: Paperback
"We are all struggling; none of us has gone far." Perhaps not, but the world presented in these poems of a Bhakti, devotion is a different, further, place, one of struggle yet, but also of ecstatic love. Kabir is a poet from India Fourteenth century, while Bly a poet of our time. He tries to bring this home with specifics for our age, for example, "a loaded gun" rather than "deadly weapon" . These are not translation, but are Robert Bly's "versions". Divided into 4 sections "The Gardener is Coming", "The Wanting Creature", "The Bride Want Her Lover", and "The Guest is Inside You". There are some startling lines in these poems; for example:
if you can't find where your soul is hidden, for you the world will never be real.

When you're trying to find a hardwood forest, it seems wise to know what a tree is.

There is a moon in my body, but I can't see it.

This short book is rich, the short introduction gives a setting of Kabir, while the poems themselves are nicely illustrated for example "Krishna with Flute", help to give an otherworldly effect. The afterward by John Hawley, helps to locate Bly, and proposes a connection from Thoreau to Bly.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
His poems are short and enigmatic. They bear repetition and pondering. Like Rumi, he is able to pierce to he heart of a deep subject with humor, beautiful metaphor and keen insight. He sometimes like to be a bit shocking, poking fun at established (and perhaps sacred) icons. For me his playfulness lightens up things.
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By Kaleem on April 2, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Awesome quality and nicely spaced print. The quality of the book is great. I enjoyed reading the poems but just like an translation you have to understand it won't be the same thing like the original language. Neverthless it's a good read for non-Hindi readers.
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By CMD on January 3, 2016
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A thought-provoking read with incredible philosophy behind it, filled with beautiful poetry and art. I read it for a university class, and I wish my university offered more classes on Hindu and other Indian beliefs. Something everyone in the world needs to read at least once.
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