- Hardcover: 736 pages
- Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; First edition (April 8, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0151011958
- ISBN-13: 978-0151011957
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 2.2 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 63 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #489,738 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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A Poet's Glossary First Edition
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*Starred Review* A glossary is useful, welcome, sometimes fun, but rarely, if ever, a catalyst for astonishment. Leave it to revered poet, poetry apostle, and glossator extraordinaire Hirsch (The Living Fire, 2010) to turn this humble resource into a vibrant, polyglot, world-circling, century-spanning, mind-expanding work of profound scholarship and literary art. Hirsch demonstrated his glossarial gift in his best-selling How to Read a Poem (1999), launching the passionate and sustained immersion in world poetry’s vocabulary, genres, and theory brought to fruition here. Lush with poem excerpts and poet profiles, the longer entries on such subjects as the epic and free verse possess the contextual richness and narrative drive of master lectures, while the more concise definitions are models of clarification. The result is a uniquely vital, cogent, conversational, and inclusive inquiry into the craft, philosophical concerns, and emotional intensity that gave rise to oral and written traditions, diverse movements, and many “small devices and large mysteries.” Hirsch defines any term in English you can think of and many more, along with ghinnawa, a form of Bedouin folk poetry; the Sanskrit term rasa, denoting the “soul of poetry”; and shan-shui, China’s rivers-and-mountain verse. A thrilling “repertoire of poetic secrets,” this radiant compendium is shaped by Hirsch’s abiding gratitude for the demands and power, illumination, and solace of poetry, “a human fundamental.” --Donna Seaman
"Edward Hirsch’s “A Poet’s Glossary” is an instant classic that belongs on the bookshelf of every serious poet and literature student...Hirsch explains them all with the ease of a tour guide who has spent a lifetime learning the territory...The more you read in this insightful book, the more you’ll feel a part of a communal journey that has continued for thousands of years" —Washington Post"A glossary is useful, welcome, sometimes fun, but rarely, if ever, a catalyst for astonishment. Leave it to revered poet, poetry apostle, and glossator extraordinaire Hirsch (The Living Fire, 2010) to turn this humble resource into a vibrant, polyglot, world-circling, century-spanning, mind-expanding work of profound scholarship and literary art...A thrilling 'repertoire of poetic secrets,' this radiant compendium is shaped by Hirsch’s abiding gratitude for the demands and power, illumination, and solace of poetry, 'a human fundamental.'" —Booklist (starred review)
"Offering definitions, a discussion of poetic techniques, and an unalloyed spiritual quality to his work...This compilation of stimulating information and of beautiful writing by a master of expression is for all who love language, not just poets." —Library Journal (starred review)
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on trips in the camper. It sniffs good, nice feel to the substantial pages, with a matte black hardcover
that hides ashes and wine. This is no dry read. It even inspires you to write more and write new and
write ways that have been experienced for centuries or last year. NEW constructions for your poetry.
Did you know there is wine poetry?
Every few pages has poetry illustrating the word. Do you love words? Then this is a treasure for you. You get poetry,
history, amazement and new words just itching to swirl around your tongue, and funny stuff too. OMG, throw away
the dang jacket and get your fingers in this book. I truly love it. I need another one for travel. I mean it! FIVE + FIVE STARS.
Here's a random sampling of terms included: abstract, aporia, chant, dyfalu, fabliau, fin de siecle, gai saber, gestalt, Hermeticism, inspiration, lyric, modernism, muse, New Criticism, pathetic fallacy, psychoanalytic criticism, rhapsode, sutra, yugen, zaum. Included are many non-English words; not only from European languages, but also Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Sanskrit, Persian, Arabic and others. Plenty of quotes, always in English, from a vast variety of sources.
Footnotes and notes in back are absent. Scant information is given for the sources of some quotes, only the author is often given; but it's always sufficient, and makes for smoother, more relaxed, aesthetic readings.
A book simply for the pleasure of sampling, dipping into, perusing, often at random.
An excellent aid to the study of poetry and aesthetics, also for those familiar already with many of the terms, for the delight of encountering a new twist or such. An excellent gift for someone, say a high school or college student, simply as a vocabulary builder.
Also, there is a stunning lack of hypertext. At the end of each entry there is a See Other addendum, pointing the reader to related entries. These are not in hypertext, which is close to dumbfounding. Even within the descriptions significant text should be linked to definitions or related material. This is standard for e-form dictionaries, etc.
If I'd known how much they missed the mark on this Kindle version, I would have ordered the hard copy. Regardless, it's just a big disappointment to see such an opportunity to exploit the electronic format go to waste.