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Some Ether: Poems Paperback – May 1, 2000
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Top Customer Reviews
But then I looked at a copy. And immediately bought it. Because Flynn does something far more than just write about his childhood trauma -- he transforms this awful experience into a series of dry, deeply affecting meditations. It isn't unnecessarily depressing, and it certainly isn't self-pitying. These are poems which dig into the core of human experience and emotion.
Many of the poems are fragmentary or collage-like bursts of imagery, memory, reflection, dreams. A quick first reading lets you notice many beautiful or quirky lines ("I'm sick of God & his teaspoons"), but also makes you feel a bit like the reader of a collection of postcards and shopping lists sent from a psychiatric ward. It's a unique feeling. A closer reading, though, reveals the art. Reading the poems together, slowly, listening for the harmonies and discords, becomes an overwhelming experience. By the time you reach the last lines of the last poem -- "My fingers/ tangle your hair, trace/ your skull, your face so radiant// I can barely look into it." -- you have been through a full emotional journey, a sensual quest for meaning.
It's not a perfect collection, but it shouldn't be. Despite the high quality of their crafting, these poems are raw. There are gaps and crevices between them. Terrain such as this needs to be rough.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Most of the poems in this book are about life with his mother, who committed suicide when he was young, and there are also some about his father, who was homeless. Read morePublished on January 5, 2014 by k lewis loess
Was recommended this book, and in writing my own manuscript of poems, was eager to dive into it. I really needed some support from my writing elder. Read morePublished on May 5, 2011 by Elena
I regret having missed the opportunity to meet Nick Flynn, as he was signing books and giving a lecture about "Some Ether" at the state college where I live. Read morePublished on January 27, 2006 by J from NY
This may be considered a bias review since I had a class under Nick Flynn's wing, but unlike my other professors, his poetry is deeply resounding and touching. Read morePublished on January 19, 2005 by Advance Syndrome
I read this book as one of the several assigned to me before a writing conference. I'm not really a fan of poetry. Read morePublished on April 20, 2003 by Todd Sullivan
This is quite simply one of the sappiest, self-serving collections of poetry to be published in the past 5 years or so in America. It is AWFUL.Published on December 1, 2001
I think Nick Flynn's first book is absolutely stunning. It's the best lyrical poetry I've read in a while. Read morePublished on September 8, 2001
i read this book. i thought it was self-centered and boring and does nothing with the form. these are pretty poems about bad things. Read morePublished on July 5, 2001
Actually I'm more amused by the comments of some of these readers than I am by the poetry itself. The work is cliche. Read morePublished on June 7, 2001