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Swan: Poems and Prose Poems Paperback – March 27, 2012
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Praise for Mary Oliver
"She is, far and away, this country's best selling poet." —Dwight Garner, New York Times Book Review
"You can pick up pretty much any Mary Oliver collection and be thrilled, but Swan...is so piercing and penetrating that form seems to fall away, an unnecessary stage for the rocket." —Brian Doyle, Christian Century
"Oliver reminds us of the mystery and necessity of poetry, whose source is, ultimately, the Creator." —Angela O'Donnell, America
“One of the astonishing aspects of Oliver’s work is the consistency of tone over this long period [of her career]. What changes is an increased focus on nature and an increased precision with language that has made her one of our very best poets. . . . Although few poets have fewer human beings in their poems than Mary Oliver, it is ironic that few poets also go so far to help us forward.”—Stephen Dobyns, New York Times Book Review
“Mary Oliver’s poetry is fine and deep; it reads like a blessing. Her special gift is to connect us with our sources in the natural world, its beauties and terrors and mysteries and consolations.”—Stanley Kunitz
“Mary Oliver’s poems are natural growths out of a loam of perception and feeling, and instinctive skill with language makes them seem effortless. Reading them is a sensual delight.”—May Swenson
“Like Henry David Thoreau of Transcendentalist fame she is a naturalist whose attention to what used to be called the Book of Nature borders on both devotion and experimentation. . . . Mindfulness seems to be Oliver’s métier, looking and listening her scientific method and contemplative practice.”—Stephen Prothero, Search
“I should be clear that Mary Oliver is, to my mind, one of the most gifted American poets working in English today. In her hands, the language acquires a lucidity approaching translucence; the accuracy of her vision and the precision of her voice are unique in their refreshing simplicity. Perhaps most singular is the tendency of her poems to be at once powerful and appealing; an affection for the natural world and a sympathy toward the reader abide.” —Katherine Hollander, Pleiades
“This year the Top 5 [Indiebound poetry best sellers] can be summed up in six words: Mary Oliver, Mary Oliver, Mary Oliver. Oliver’s impressive feat reflects both an enduring popularity and an unparalleled ability to touch readers on a deep, almost primal level.”—Elizabeth Lund, Christian Science Monitor
“Mary Oliver moves by instinct, faith, and determination. She is among our finest poets, and still growing.”—Alicia Ostriker, The Nation
“One would have to reach back perhaps to [John] Clare or [Christopher] Smart to safely cite a parallel to Oliver’s lyricism.”—David Barber, Poetry
“The music in Oliver’s writing is unmistakable. Her poetry can be read as the best of the real lyrics we have these days, and it’s no surprise that she’s already won a Pulitzer Prize for it, as well as many other honors.”—Los Angeles Times
Top Customer Reviews
"But we all know, don't we, how sometimes
things have to feel anger, so as not
to be defeated?"
I'll continue buying every one of her books.
It is lovely. Thank you, Jessye. I think you're lovely too. I will definitely purchase more of Ms. Oliver's work.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One of my favorites of Mary Oliver's so far. I would recommend it to anyone who is new to her work, as well. It would be a great way to "meet" her poetry.Published 1 month ago by Karen Schnurstein
Nobody writes poetry, especially nature poetry like Oliver, I love it!Published 4 months ago by Loretta Lester
there are not enough words to say how Mary Oliver makes you feel...it is an experience you have to have for yourself.Published 4 months ago by Theresa West
If I could only read one writer for the rest of my life, it would be Mary Oliver. I never tire of her. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Mark
Mary Oliver just gets me through the day and the Swan collection is perfect.Published 5 months ago by Christine Linder