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The Old Life: New Poems by [Donald Hall]

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The Old Life: New Poems Kindle Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 ratings

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Stories told one episode at a time. Start reading for free. pantry

Editorial Reviews Review

In his first book of poems since the death of his wife, the gifted poet Jane Kenyon, Hall reviews his life, considering and re-casting scenes that have haunted him. These include his great-uncle's hands, "white as Wonder bread," a ruined Halloween, and T.S. Eliot's advice to young Hall, newly arrived at Oxford: "Have you any long underwear?" It is Kenyon's death, though, that Hall is moving toward. His simple lines speak worlds about grief's searing intensity. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

This collection has little of the sharply observed, tender lyricism that characterizes much of Hall's earlier work, yet the four sequences here reflect preoccupations that he has made his own: family, nature, rural life, baseball. Hall's oeuvre may someday stand as a poetic record of one man's life in this last half-century, but the extent to which Hall is a memoirist more than a poet is quite evident here. "The Night of the Day," the 10-page opening poem, is a precious recounting of two heifers wandering on a road; "The Thirteenth Inning" unsuccessfully attempts to relieve thoughts of death with memories of baseball games. In the 96-page title poem, Hall employs an agile three-stress line to minor effect, conveying anecdotes of a life remembered with a tenderness that the reader is not persuaded to honor. The final poem, "Without," which the publisher intrusively insists is about the death of Hall's wife, Jane Kenyon, is indeed a despairing tract, but one that seems more fruitfully framed as Hall's embittered response to e.e. cummings's jauntily styled "Anyone Lived in a Pretty How Town" than as a simple elegy: "no spring no summer no autumn no winter/ no rain no peony thunder no woodthrush/ the book is a thousand pages without commas." Unfortunately, only in this atypical piece are emotion and memory subjected to poetic transformation.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B004S3NVGA
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Mariner Books (April 23, 1997)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ April 23, 1997
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 5802 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 146 pages
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    5.0 out of 5 stars 2 ratings

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