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For a Modest God: New and Selected Poems (Grove Press Poetry) Hardcover – March 21, 1997

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Ormsby's work has earned the prestigious Ingraham Merrill Prize and Canada's QSpell Award for poetry. The present work adds to the impressive body of poems available in his earlier Coastlines (ECW, 1992) and Bavarian Shrine and Other Poems (ECW, 1990) and identifies him as a master of the poetry of sheer observation. A typical poem in this collection focuses on a specific event or object, scrupulously examining it with analytical precision, then teasing from it intimations of, if not immortality, at least the universal order of things. His method demonstrates the delight and potency of pure description, which, with Ormsby, unfailingly exposes the unexpected extraordinary in the ordinary subjects it addresses: a railroad yard in winter, a conch shell, lichens, skunk cabbage, a turtle's skull, and even the nose. This volume deserves a prominent place in all poetry collections. Highly recommended.?Thomas F. Merrill, Univ. of Delaware, Fla.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

Adages Of A Grandmother
Amber
Anhinga
The Ant Lion
Baudelaire To Mme. Aupick, At Honfleur (1867)
Bavarian Shrine
Blood
The Caliph
Childhood House
Coastlines
Conch Shell
Crab
Craneworld
A Crow At Morning
December
Finding A Portrait Of The Rugby Colonists, My Ancestors
Fingernails
Flamingos
Florida Bay
A Florida Childhood
For A Modest God
Forgetful Lazarus
Foundry
Fragrances
Garter Snake
Gazing At Waves
Getting Ready For The Night
The Gossip Of The Fire
Grackle
Gravediggers' April
Halifax
Hand-painted China
Hate
Highway Grasses
History
Horseshoe Crab
Lazarus And Basements
Lazarus In Skins
Lazarus In Sumatra
Lazarus Listens
Lichens
Live Oak, With Bromeliads
Moths At Nightfall
Mullein
Mutanabbi In Exile
Mutanabbi Praises The Prince
Mutanabbi Remembers His Father
My First Beach
My Mother In Old Age
Nose
Nova Scotia
An Oak Skinned By Lightning
Of Paradise As A Garden
Old Photographs Of Children
Origins
The Public Gardens
Quark Fog
Railway Stanzas
Railyard In Winter
Rain In Childhood
Remembrance
River Plants
Rooster
Salle Des Martyrs
Savannahs
Skunk Cabbage
Spider
Spider Silk
Starfish
Statues And Mannequins
The Suitors Of My Grandmother's Youth
Turtle's Skull
What It Is Like To Be A Bat
Wood Fungus
-- Table of Poems from Poem Finder®
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Product Details

  • Series: Grove Press Poetry
  • Hardcover: 139 pages
  • Publisher: Grove Press; 1st edition (March 21, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802116078
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802116079
  • Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,945,767 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Eric Ormsby takes his place among the great poets of the 20th century with his New and Selected poems. He is at home with traditional forms, metrics, and rhyme. He is comfortable with free verse and imagistic poetry. This collection shows a range that is matched only by the very best poets such as Wallace Stevens, W. H. Auden, David Slavitt, and Robert Penn Warren.
Ormsby is also a well-rounded thinker and scholar. His understanding of the literatures and languages of other cultures lends to his work that thing so often missing in contemporary poetry--substance. His poems are informed by his studies in German, French, Hungarian, and Middle-Eastern literature.
Ormsby is a wonderful addition to the ranks of major poets. Buy this book. It's the best collection of poetry I've read this year.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I read and loved the the eponymous titled poem years ago in the New Yorker. My sister made me a calligraphy copy of it for my wall. (This was in 1993 I think...) So when this collection came out I bought it. I have been reading this a little bit at a time, and am pleased with it. I also looked Ornsby up online and read a bit about his background. It added to my interest.
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