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1. Break, Blow, Burn : Camille Paglia
$10.20 $5.97 list($15.00)
2. The Prophet
$16.96 $9.49 list($19.95)
3. The Poetry of Pope John Paul II
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4. Delights and Shadows
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5. The Wild Braid: A Poet Reflects
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6. The Rose That Grew From Concrete
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7. Slouching Toward Nirvana : New
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8. The Moments, the Minutes, the
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9. The Sermon on the Mount - Reissue
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10. The Odyssey
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11. The Iliad (Penguin Classics)
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12. Collected Short Stories of Roald
$46.60 $39.95
13. American Government: Readings
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14. Complete Poems and Plays,: 1909-1950
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15. The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson
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16. The Gift: Poems by Hafiz the Great
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17. Odyssey (Penguin Classics)
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18. Refusing Heaven
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19. The Family of Man
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20. The Complete Collected Poems of

1. Break, Blow, Burn : Camille Paglia Reads Forty-three of the World's Best Poems
by CAMILLE PAGLIA
list price: $20.00
our price: $13.60
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0375420843
Catlog: Book (2005-03-29)
Publisher: Pantheon
Sales Rank: 1269
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (20)

5-0 out of 5 stars Paglia's Commentary Entertains As Well As The 43 Poems...
....she is 'right on' these classic poems--To His Coy Mistress should be every freshman's poem and Paglia elucidates why, Lagston Hughes Jazzonia compares Harlem of the Harlem Renaissance to ancient Mesopotamia, and Lady Lazarus works through some serious love/hate of papa and the paternalistic world of letters and Camille breaks it down for us. Plus she throws in Joni Mitchell, Walt Whitman, the ghostly speech from Hamlet, and one of my favorites Shelley's Ozymandias. In her introduction, she describes her personal experiences with the world of poetry from her Italian heritage to well done tv ads (such as the M&Ms commercial) to meeting and being influenced by her college mentors, Bloom and Kessler. I have been entralled by her style of criticism and popular culture reviewing since her days at the Netzine Salon. Here, she is a little subdued from some of those articles, but nevertheless, her passion about these pieces seem to have lifted the literary criticism world out of it's doldrums. Paglia's poetry book should not only help ol' dogs like me to get back into the reading and enjoyment of poetry and literature--(heck, I'm jealous of those kids who have been able to sign up in one of her classes)--but it also should give those kids in Lit 101 a big hand. This is a very good book by a living legend and a great Lady of Letters. Get it. You will enjoy every page.

4-0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable...But You May Disagree With Her Choices
I really liked this book. Any book that discusses poetry passionately and promotes its importance in the world is great by me. However, when discussing "Best of" choices, it is entirely a matter of opinion. Poetry is the most subjective and individual kind of writing -- many argue it is the highest form of literature (and I would agree with that). My problem are the choices here. Camille Paglia has her own taste of course, so she's entitled. But of the choices here, in MY opinion, about 10% would fall into the category of "best of."

I always find Camille Paglia's work engaging, so I would recommend this book. A plus if you're a poetry lover like myself. And, as always, I do appreciate her speaking out against Academia with its stilted, post-post modern tastes. This is a woman with strong opinions and she states them passionately. Buy a copy of Break, Blow, Burn -- try it for yourself. You may feel differently about her choices, agree or disagree, but at the very least enjoy the debate. Another Amazon pick I need to recommend, one I purchased recently and can't stop thinking about is called THE LOSERS CLUB: Complete Restored Edition by Richard Perez -- about a poet who can't published. Now there's a character I can relate to!

3-0 out of 5 stars Not the Spicy Meatball I Was Expecting
Basically, it's very dull.Not the spicy meatball I expected after all the hoopla over Sexual Personae (which I didn't read).I guess I have to complete it although, at times, I feel like I'm taking my spoon of castor oil on Saturday night.And my God!She's more Freudian than I am - I don't feel like such a psycho-interpretive methodoligical dinosaur any more.I'm sure one motive for the anthology is to shock.After 26 "usual suspects" selected from the greatest hits of English poetry, she starts bouncing all over the place - I've not heard of at least half of the 18 remaining poets - then wraps it up with Joni Mitchell's "Woodstock."The essays would each be given A's if submitted by an college graduate student.In that sense, they're "exemplary essays"; but they're written in such a homogenous style, it seems adaptable to any poem from any period.I admit, though, I've learned something new in nearly every essay; but otherwise ... dull.Sorry.If you think June Jordan's Poetry for the People is too scattershot and political or Adrienne Rich's What Is Found There is unfocussed and uncomfortably earnest, this is the book for you.(And I don't care how hard she tried to hide it with her formidable intellect, I have to believe that Paglia loves these poems.)

5-0 out of 5 stars Enertaining, Knowledgeable
Break, Blow, Burn
By: Camille Paglia
ISBN-0375-420843
$20.00

With Break, Blow, Burn Paglia gives insight and understanding to fourty-three poems. Some we know and love and some we will learn of. When I read poetry I like to see what the poem means to me, where I place myself in it, what it makes me feel orwhat memories it provokes. I don't always break each poem down to see what the author means. I picked this book because of the long list of poets featured. Some I learned of such as John Dunne, George Herbert, Robert Lowell,Wallace Stevens, Theodore Roethke, May Swenson, Chuck Wachtel, Rochelle Kraut and some I already love such as, Paul Blackburn, William Blake, William Shakespeare, William Wordsworth, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Walt Whitman,William Butler Yeats, William Carlos Williams, Frank O'Hara, Gary Snyder, Joni Mitchell, Wanda Coleman, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Langston Hughes , Emily Dickinson, Sylvia Plath,Jean Toomer and a few others. . I found Break, Blow, Burn to be entertaining as much as it is knowledgeable. The insight Paglia gives to these poems is wonderful. Paglia is a very gifted writer with a trained eye for the passion of poetry.
reviewed by
Dawnny

4-0 out of 5 stars Metaphoricly Speaking ....
Camille Paglia's "Break, Blow, Burn" is the lyric equivalent of Ford's 2005 Mustang!

(Okay, maybe I would like to have seen ee cummings included.) ... Read more


2. The Prophet
by KAHLIL GIBRAN
list price: $15.00
our price: $10.20
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Asin: 0394404289
Catlog: Book (1923-09-12)
Publisher: Knopf
Sales Rank: 1169
Average Customer Review: 4.82 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

In a distant, timeless place, a mysterious prophet walks the sands. At the moment of his departure, he wishes to offer the people gifts but possesses nothing. The people gather round, each asks a question of the heart, and the man's wisdom is his gift. It is Gibran's gift to us, as well, for Gibran's prophet is rivaled in his wisdom only by the founders of the world's great religions. On the most basic topics--marriage, children, friendship, work, pleasure--his words have a power and lucidity that in another era would surely have provoked the description "divinely inspired." Free of dogma, free of power structures and metaphysics, consider these poetic, moving aphorisms a 20th-century supplement to all sacred traditions--as millions of other readers already have.--Brian Bruya ... Read more

Reviews (168)

5-0 out of 5 stars Worth your time
Most stories have some sort of existential or spiritual point to make. Gibran's story has many. But unlike most books this one sacrifices length and plot, employing a simple and poetic (in prose) directness in order to tell us not so much the meaning of life as how to live. The prophet in Gibran's story is asked by his people to talk about everything from the law to pain and death. And his sermons are both instructive and profound without being over righteous or narcissistic. In fact, so carefully woven and universal is Gibran's prose that one could conceivably adopt The Prophet as some sort of new age holy book. This would, of course, not only be potentially unwise but also unnecessary since its foundations are clearly derived from Judeo-Christian spiritual values. It certainly does not square with many eastern religions in its almost excessive romanticization of notions such as good, evil and God. And even for western readers, it is probably most valuable when considered as an eloquent reminder of our own spiritual heritage. I will keep this book and undoubtedly reread it many times over for its depth and wisdom. It isn't easy to write a modern set of spiritual aphorisms without sounding awkward, cliched, or downright wrong. But Gibran manages it with a natural attractiveness and spiritual sincerity that has assured its status as a modernized tome of timeless spiritual values.

5-0 out of 5 stars Spiritual masterpiece
Khalil Gibran's The Prophet is a truly awe inspiring work of prosaic poetry. Despite being a native-born Arabic speaker, Gibran wrote The Prophet in English, ensuring that his powerful words lost nothing in translation.

The work's 28 short chapters recount the words of a prophet as he leaves his home to depart on a new journey. The words that flow from the prophet's mouth and onto the pages are philosophical and spiritual treatises on all aspects of life. Chapters discuss the range of human experiences and include discussions such as "On Friendship", "On Pain" and "On Death." What unites the 28 chapters is Gibran's thought provoking and probing literary style as Gibran's prophet invokes his listeners to live life to the fullest. The book is not overtly religious but every word and sentence is filled with a spiritual clarity.

The book is eminently quotable with every chapter providing a nugget of truth worthy of repeating. Amazingly, Gibran packs his masterpiece into less than 100 pages, making it a very quick and easy read. Readers will find themselves returning to The Prophet again and again to recapture the beauty of Gibran's words.

The Prophet, which Gibran himself recognized as his greatest masterpiece, is a timeless literary classic. Its truth has touched generations of readers and will undoubtedly continue to do so.

5-0 out of 5 stars MidWest Book Review
If I have ever read a book that is timeless, other than the Word of God, it would have to be this one. Although I may not have agreed with every word written, so many of the words of wisdom within these pages brought peace and comfort to me.
I read this book many, many years ago. I quoted from it at times and thought of it often. The words seemed to wrap themselves around your heart and spring out in times of need. There are not many books that can stake that claim, and I have read many.

A classic in my opinion and a book that will never be outdated.

Recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars the beauty of spirituality
I was given this book by a writer friend who called it "the most beautiful book I've ever read." So, since she and I have similar literary tastes, I was inclined to read it. This little book, written in a rich, colorful, deep, and wise poetic style, is full of some of the most moving and impressive spiritual phrases and messages I've ever read. It was written in 1923 but its poetry and wisdom are timeless.

David Rehak
author of "Poems From My Bleeding Heart"

5-0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Wonderful!!
This is a book you can read and re-read many many times.
Great and timeless thoughts about relationships, love and
friendship. I will share this with my family. :)

Jeffrey C. McAndrew
author of "Our Brown Eyed Boy" ... Read more


3. The Poetry of Pope John Paul II
by John Paul II, Pope John Paul II
list price: $19.95
our price: $16.96
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Asin: 1574555561
Catlog: Book (2003-09-01)
Publisher: USCCB
Sales Rank: 29978
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

In this trio of poems wriiten in the summer of 2002, Pope John Paul II uses the imagery of a mountain stream, the Sistine chapel and the story of Abraham and Isacc as he reflects on God as the origin and end point of all creation and ponders the beginning and end of his time as Pope. ... Read more

Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars We have such a gift!
Our Holy Father is indeed a gifted poet. This should be required reading for all Catholics. And suggested reading for everyone else!

5-0 out of 5 stars Very Inspirational book!!
The book was really amazing, I think any religious person,or anyone interested in becoming a christian should consider reviewing it. ... Read more


4. Delights and Shadows
by Ted Kooser
list price: $15.00
our price: $10.20
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Asin: 1556592019
Catlog: Book (2004-05-15)
Publisher: Copper Canyon Press
Sales Rank: 2312
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Book Description

Ted Kooser is a master of metaphor, a poet who deftly connects disparate elements of the world and communicates with absolute precision. Critics call him a "haiku-like imagist" and his poems have been compared to Chekov's short stories. In Delights and Shadows, Kooser draws inspiration from the overlooked details of daily life. Quotidian objects like a pegboard, creamed corn and a forgotten salesman's trophy help reveal the remarkable in what before was a merely ordinary world.

"Kooser documents the dignities, habits and small griefs of daily life, our hunger for connection, our struggle to find balance."-Poetry

Ted Kooser is the author of eight collections of poems and a prose memoir. He lives on a small farm in rural Nebraska.

... Read more

5. The Wild Braid: A Poet Reflects on a Century in the Garden
by Stanley Kunitz, GENINE LENTINE
list price: $23.95
our price: $16.29
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Asin: 0393061418
Catlog: Book (2005-05-16)
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Sales Rank: 1223
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Book Description

From his celebrated seaside garden, a beloved poet-in his one-hundredth year-speaks about life, poetry, and the kindred spirit in all living things.

Throughout his life Stanley Kunitz has been creating poetry and tending gardens. This book is the distillation of conversations—none previously published—that took place between 2002 and 2004. Beginning with the garden, that "work of the imagination," the explorations journey through personal recollections, the creative process, and the harmony of the life cycle. A bouquet of poems and a total of twenty-six full-color photographs accompany the various sections.

In the spring of 2003, Kunitz experienced a mysterious health crisis from which, miraculously, he emerged in what he called a "transformed state." During this period, his vision of the garden-constant source of solace and renewal-propelled him. The intimate, often witty conversations that followed this time are presented here in their entirety, as transcribed. Their central themes, circling mortality and regeneration, attest to Kunitz's ever-present sagacity and wit. "Immortality," he answers when asked. "It's not anything I'd lose sleep over." 26 color photographs. ... Read more


6. The Rose That Grew From Concrete
by Tupac Shakur
list price: $21.00
our price: $14.28
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Asin: 0671028448
Catlog: Book (1999-11-01)
Publisher: MTV
Sales Rank: 2483
Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

His talent was unbounded, a raw force that commanded attention and respect.

His death was tragic -- a violent homage to the power of his voice.

His legacy is indomitable -- remaining vibrant and alive.

Here now, newly discovered, are Tupac's most honest and intimate thoughts conveyed through the pure art of poetry -- a mirror into his enigmatic life and its many contradictions.

Written in his own hand at the age of nineteen, they embrace his spirit, his energy...and his ultimate message of hope. ... Read more

Reviews (137)

5-0 out of 5 stars See The World Through The Eyes of a Great Man
"The Rose That Grew From Concrete" is an amazing collection of poetry by Tupac Shukur. The poems let you go deep in his mind and see a side of Tupac that most people have never seen. As you read his poems you start to realize how he truly feels and what messages he wants to get across. You also see the pain and obstacles in his life that he had to overcome. Some people listen to Tupac's music and just hear the negative and the cussing. Not understanding that you have to know the negative to see and understand the positive. Some people see Tupac's music as a bad influence, because they don't listen to all the words to get the real message. This collection of poems is a great way to understand Tupac's life and to receive his true message, to end crime and to stop the hate. This collection of poems has had a great influence on my life and the way I look at the world. I think that everyone who reads this book can relate to Tupac in some way and I would recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of poetry about life and of course to anyone who loves Tupac.

5-0 out of 5 stars His Legend Lives On
Tupac Shakur's collection of poetry is as dynamic as his life and songs. Tupac has touched on many subjects that cross the racial barriers in his book. He seems a young man full of hope and promise. The gangster mentality is almost nonexistent in The Rose That Grew From Concrete. His thoughts on love and relationships are wonderul and moving. Even his poem about death is insightful. Some of the poetry really touched my soul. I have been a Tupac fan for many years and when I saw the book in the store, I immediately started reading. The poems are compelling and remind me of his life. I couldn't wait to share The Rose That Grew From Concrete with my family and friends. If you love poetry and the African American culture than this is a book to add to your collection.

5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful teaching tool!!!
I am a middle school English teacher who uses this collection when teaching a poetry unit. While most of Tupac's writing is rough and unedited, it shows students that poetry is a beautiful way to express ideas and emotions. Young people are so full of passion and idealism. Someone as famous as Tupac started off similar to them... Small with bigs dreams and a hunger for growing up and changing the world. It's not so much about rap but about the art of lyrical poetry. My students find it fascinating and inspiring.

1-0 out of 5 stars sorry to say this
all the stuff from this book is from when he wasn't famous yet. he didn't have anything to say back then. he was a very profound person but i wasn't compelled with anything he said until he started looking at political issues and crimes and society in his raps. When he was in his late teens and early 20's and had to deal with the corruptions of society, that was when he had interesting, even brilliant things to say. But, not before. I'm a big Tupac fan, but this wasn't worth it. He just talks about love and it's cheesy and the rhymes aren't very well done. Get stuff from his more recent times to really understand his character.

5-0 out of 5 stars tupac shakur in the hearts of his fans
This book is full of feelings towards love and full of anger towards the government and against politics. His best poetry was written through his expressions and feelings. This book could relate to the way you feel about something during that period of time. The right words are put together to express what you feel within. Tupac was a great poet who was with respect by the society he wrote what he felt, not what people wanted to hear. ... Read more


7. Slouching Toward Nirvana : New Poems
by Charles Bukowski
list price: $27.50
our price: $18.15
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0060577037
Catlog: Book (2005-02-01)
Publisher: Ecco
Sales Rank: 55657
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Book Description

Charles Bukowski is one of America's best-known contemporary writers of poetry and prose, and, many would claim, its most influential and imitated poet. He was born in Andernach, Germany, to an American soldier father and a German mother in 1920, and brought to the United States at the age of three. He was raised in Los Angeles and lived there for fifty years. He published his first story in 1944 when he was twenty-four and began writing poetry at the age of thirty-five. He died in San Pedro, California, on March 9, 1994, at the age of seventy-three, shortly after completing his last novel, Pulp (1994).

During his lifetime Bukowski published more than forty-five books of poetry and prose, including the novels Post Office (1971), Factotum (1975), Women (1978), Ham on Rye (1982), and Hollywood (1989). Among his most recent books are the posthumous editions of What Matters Most Is How Well You Walk Through the Fire: New Poems (1999), Open All Night: New Poems (2000), The Night Torn Mad with Footsteps: New Poems (2001), Sifting through the madness for the Word, the line, the way: New Poems (2003), and The Flash of Lightning Behind the Mountain: New Poems (2004).

All of his books have now been published in translation in more than a dozen languages, and his worldwide popularity remains undiminished. In the years to come Ecco will publish additional volumes of previously uncollected poetry and prose.

... Read more

8. The Moments, the Minutes, the Hours : The Poetry of Jill Scott
by Jill Scott
list price: $18.95
our price: $12.89
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 031232961X
Catlog: Book (2005-04-01)
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Sales Rank: 3195
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Writing poems and keeping journal since 1991, Jill Scott now shares her personal poetry collection in The Moments, the Minutes, the Hours.Praised for her earthy, honestly erotic, soulful and very real lyrics, Jill Scott explores all the flavors of life, love, and self.

Of her music, Jill offers: "It's music.It's experiences. It's vulnerability.It's honesty.It's being a woman---an African American woman.Being a daughter, a sister, a grandchild and a Godmother.It's life.It's deeper than what I know.It's bigger than what I can see. I guess it's a dive into the human spirit."And the same will come forth in this never- before-seen collection of her poetry.
... Read more

Reviews (9)

5-0 out of 5 stars Honesty is Beautiful
I first fell in love with Jill Scott as an artist when I heard her song, "Love", laden with DC's go-go rhythms from her first album "Who is Jill Scott?" I have to say I've fallen in love with her all over again with her debut book of poetry.

Poetry is alot things, but what is poetry if it's not honest? Mrs. Scott is as real as they come. Her spirit jumps from the pages and permeates the reader's most intimate places. And whether that place is gray and blue or yellow and sunny, you always end up smiling anyway. She is "beautifully human" and makes you feel safe being human right along with her.

I recommend this book to those of us who don't have it all figured out just yet. You're human. Let Jill's words hold you.

I recommend this book to those of us who believe we've figured it all out. You'll learn life has so many more lessons to teach and is so much more than we could ever confine in a box.

Life is in this lady from North Philly.


5-0 out of 5 stars So Nice Say It Twice
The reflections of her mind are beautiful.I KNEW as soon as I got word of the book it would be a must read to hold and keep.Therefore I recommend that you take the time to read and re-read the pages, there's something for everyone.As with the motion of water her words will move you.

5-0 out of 5 stars Clear expectations
I bought this book probably hoping to read more poetry like what was shared in the spaces on her first album and her live album - knowing of course of Mrs. Scott's history as a spokenword artist. I was surprised to find alot of poetry spanning her entire history - works from when she was a young girl to current peices. people who say they found the work repetitive, I assume sat and read the book from to back, and in my personal opinion that is no way to read poetry books, especially when all the works are from one artist. Read specific pieces, things that draw you from the table of contents and be pulled by Mrs. Scott's ablility to paint with words. She has range and it is shown through the different sections of the book. She addresses life and it is not difficult to understand, not difficult to hold on to, not difficult to move with her poems - Much like her music. she is definately a poet and I pray she is not grouped into that lump of artists (t-boz, ashanti {I haven't read Alicia Keys work to say}) who release journal entries and unpracticed works because they can. Jill Scott's poetry asks to be read and I look forward to her next collection so I can do it again.

5-0 out of 5 stars No suprise, Jill Scott's poetry is beautifully lyrical.
If you love the music of Jill Scott for its beautifully personal and uplifting content, you'll simply devour these nearly 150 pages of her poems.

Jill has often said that she's kept written journals for years.As many of Jill's song lyrics read like poems to me (and I dearly love them), I was not surprised to find myself deeply engrossed in Jill's accounts of life and love in this compilation.

Jill's writings unapologetically hold love up and examine, admire and venerate it. Her poems also touch on issues of friendship and family.

I've known since I heard the first song from her very first album that Jill was not just another singer, but a poet who happens to possess and beautiful voice and undeniable music talent. Now she is not only an accomplished poet, but a published one.It speaks so highly of her talent and her very nature that the likes of Sonia Sanchez and Maya Angelou have recognized the power of her gift and her loving, intelligent spirit.

Never a big fan of audio books, I'm dying for the audio version of this collection!!!

2-0 out of 5 stars just Ok
I think Jill scott is Talented but much like Her Music this Poetry book is so predictable. nothing ever changes with her.funny how most songwriters Poetry Books are just average&this is the latest in that Line to me. ... Read more


9. The Sermon on the Mount - Reissue : The Key to Success in Life
by Emmet Fox
list price: $13.95
our price: $10.46
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0060628626
Catlog: Book (1989-10-18)
Publisher: HarperSanFrancisco
Sales Rank: 5343
Average Customer Review: 4.36 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

The Sermon on the Mount--now passing its 65th birthday--remains a vital and provocative introduction to the ideas at the heart of Christian Science. At heart it means to be entirely practical, as the "Science" of the name would indicate. Denying any interest in theology (there is no theology in the Bible, Fox argues), the author instead suggests that what Jesus was after was results: "Jesus explains to us what the nature of God is, and what our own nature is; tells us the meaning of life and of death; shows us why we make mistakes; why we yield to temptation; why we become sick, and impoverished, and old; and, most important of all, he tells us how all these evils may be overcome, and how we may bring health, happiness, and true prosperity into our lives."

And the Spiritual Key? Fox puts it quite simply: "The Truth turns out to be nothing less than the amazing but undeniable fact that the whole outer world--whether it be the physical body, the common things of life, the winds and the rain, the clouds, the earth itself--is amenable to man's thought, and that he has dominion over it when he knows it." --Doug Thorpe ... Read more

Reviews (39)

4-0 out of 5 stars The Truth Works...
The traditional interpretations of Jesus the Christ's teachings have turned thinking individuals into opponents of the Bible. Well, Mr. Fox's work (I read the original version published in the 1930's) provides some acceptable insights.

While Mr. Fox's works are slightly skewed in his references to how the "European race" has civilized the rest of the world, brought order where there is chaos, etc., etc., there is a solid message here.

His analysis the Sermon on the Mount (Mathew 5, 6 and 7 in the Bible), demonstrates beyond a shadow of a doubt that the mind is the builder of all that is in the life of man and woman.

If you are a Christian fundamentalist who has decided not to question literal, traditional interpretations of the Bible in any way, this book is not for you. However, if you find that traditional, mainstream Christianity doesn't fit into your views of life and yet you still believe in the fundamental usefulness of the core teachings of Christianity, I offer that you do the following:

1) Read this book with an open mind

2) Test some the principles in your own life, applying the principles to the resolution of problems that have heretofore not been solved using other methods

3) See what happens.

Every New Thought book I review I also mention the works of Dr. Joseph Murphy's ("The Power of Your Subconscious Mind" is his most famous) because they have had such an impact on my life as well the lives of countless others. If you are new to New Thought and are trying to decide which books to buy, I say read Joseph Murphy Book "Telepsychics" where he discusses Emmet Fox and this book as well.

5-0 out of 5 stars A long trip back.
I am a recovering alcoholic. A few months back I went on an 8 day cruise to Central America. When the ship left the dock I was seized by a panic, I would be stuck on this ship, away from my support group in no less than a floating bar. I was up most of the first night. The next day I found this book (a friend had loaned it to me) and in desperation I started reading. By the end of the day my panic had passed and I felt closer to God than I had in a long time. I thought I had given up on Jesus many many years ago and that was the attitude I had when I boarded the ship. After reading this book I stepped on to the shore in Miami a Christian again, something I thought was quite impossible. This is a very powerful book. Mr. Fox sweeps away centuries of religious dogma and brings us back to the spiritual principals Jesus actually taught. I have read it several times since my trip. It has done nothing less than revolutionize my whole outlook on life and recovery. The right book at exactly the right time in my life. I pray it will do the same for you.

5-0 out of 5 stars Life Changing
I use this book as a daily meditation and study guide. It has dramatically changed my perspective on Christianity and life. This is a real spiritual study guide -- not for beginners or fundamentalists.

1-0 out of 5 stars Beware
I read this book and fell in love with it. Then, I started reading more books by Fox and doing research on his background and his fellow spiritual teachers. The strange part about his writing is he doesn't acknowledge Jesus Christ as being the true Son of God. He refers to him as Jesus and describes how other religion sects view him, but the writer himself doesn't acknowledge Jesus Christ as "the Son of God," in any of his books. His whole concept of spirituality is that each of us have the power through constructive thinking to physically change our environment and lives. Well this is true on certain levels, but as a Christian I am saved by grace and God's power, not my own. The way to salvation and God is through Jesus Christ, and not just changing our mindset only. If this was true Jesus would have died in vain. Don't just take my opinion, research his background for yourself and read more of his books and compare them to biblical scriptures. Pray for wisdom and insight while you do this. Satan sometimes comes to us as an angel of light. Be discerning.

5-0 out of 5 stars If you could only have one book
I can't count the number of times I have read this book over the last twenty years. And I have given copies of it to a great number of people over the years. I'm buying another copy today for a friend, and one to replace the one I gave away recently. It is truly an instruction manual for a successful spirital (and material) life. If I could have only one book to read it would be this one. And I read a lot. ... Read more


10. The Odyssey
by Robert Fagles, Homer, Bernard Knox
list price: $14.95
our price: $9.42
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Asin: 0140268863
Catlog: Book (1999-11-29)
Publisher: Penguin USA (Paper)
Sales Rank: 4968
Average Customer Review: 4.13 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

If The Iliad is the world's greatest war epic, then The Odyssey is literature's grandest evocation of everyman's journey though life. Odysseus's reliance on his wit and wiliness for survival in his encounters with divine and natural forces during his ten-year voyage home to Ithaca after the Trojan War is at once a timeless human story and an individual test of moral endurance.

Translated by Robert Fagles
Introduction and Notes by Bernard Knox
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Reviews (109)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Beggar-King of Ithaca
O sing in me, muse...

If only Athena would whisper in my ear the review she would write! That said, I feel it would take an Olympian god to adequately convey the richness and scope of Homer's epic poem.

The story in "The Odyssey" is elegant and simple. A man trapped on an island far from country and kin finally gains a reprieve from the gods and is allowed to make for home (after an absence of almost twenty years). Odysseus bids farewell to his erstwhile captor, Calypso, and sets out on his homeward journey. Meanwhile, his coming-of-age son, Telemachus, begins his own Athena-led quest to find news of his dad. The home-fires back on Odysseus' native Ithaca are all but extinguished. His faithful wife Penelope continues to wage her battle against an insolent mob of greedy suitors. Not to worry, revenge is a key element in this story!

Between Odysseus' struggle to return to sea-girt Ithaca and Telemachus' wanderings to find his dad, a fair amount of Greek mythology and history spills out onto the pages; this amidst athletic competitions, banquets and endless cups of well-mixed wine. At the same time the reader is getting an education in Greek hospitality and sport, a lexicon of gods and monsters is unfolded before us.

No one really knows if Homer existed, or even if there was a Troy. None of this matters. "The Odyssey" is about heroes and scoundrels, courage and fear, life and death. It is about dedication and strength, respect and pride. "The Odyssey," one might also add, is about cunning and craftiness; he's not called "wily Odysseus" for naught.

So read "The Odyssey." Discover for yourself why this story has been around for well over 2500 years, and why it is at the inertial point of Western civilization.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Romantic Adventure Story from Ancient Greece
The Odyssey is a famous epic poem centering around the adventures of Odysseus, hero of the Trojan War. As the story begins there is a crisis in the royal palace at Ithaca. With Odysseus having been gone for nearly twenty years, his wife, Penelope, is besieged with suitors. They've moved into the palace and for three years have consumed much of the resources of the young prince, Telemachus. Unknown to all is that Odysseus is alive but being held prisoner by Calypso on the island of Ogygia.

We do not hear what happened to Odysseus until Book 5 when he's released from Ogygia with the help of Athena, only to lose his craft from Poseidon's storm. Barely surviving the storm, he washed up on the island of Phaeacia. There we learn of his incredible adventure since leaving Troy.

Battling monsters, giants, and angry gods and goddesses, Odysseus used courage, cunning, and guile to get out of one jam after another, but he was unable to save his crew. When he finally made it to Ithaca he would be faced with the biggest challenge of all-saving his kingdom.

Such was Homer's tale which must have both thrilled and terrorized the young Greeks when they first heard it some 2500 years ago. While today's youth may be a bit desensitized to Odysseus' terrors we can be moved by his courage and devotion to his family. Penelope is also a heroine in this story. Her devotion to her lost husband and awareness that her son's inheritance must be protected tore her apart; and Telemachus, only a baby when his father left, had to grow up on his own and be prepared to give his life for the kingdom. I think you'll enjoy the story.

5-0 out of 5 stars No omnipotent Gods
Many students look back in disgust on the compulsory literature they had to swallow in school, mostly (partly) in the original language.
For Homer's Odyssey (and the Iliad) this is an error.
The epic contains everything a book needs to make it an everlasting bestseller: sex sorceresses, lascivous temptresses, one-eyed ogres, innocent young maidens, flattering suitors and a model wife.
The story evolves with such eternal characters as the virtuous Penelope, the ingenious Odysseus, the innocent Nausikaa, Calypso's sex-appeaL, the man-eating Cyclops, Circe's sexual spells or the brash temptations of Scylla and Charybdis.
As in the Iliad, the only 'ancient' ingredient is the presence of the Gods, who intervene every time a disaster is going to happen.
But there is a big difference between the Iliad and the Odyssey. While in the Iliad the Gods are omnipotent, in the Odyssey 'they cannot prevent that those who are mortal die' and 'human catastrophies are man-made, not the faults of the Gods'.
Compared with the Iliad, the Odyssey is more a story-telling than a poetic epic with few Homeric comparisons or lenghty enumerations. It is also a more optimistic human tale.
A must read.

2-0 out of 5 stars HOPE
That you never give up and he fight with people to be with his girlfriend........

4-0 out of 5 stars I dont remember nothing
I liked this book because I think that this book has a lot of action and is contains some adventure too. And I recommend this because it make you think a lot about how wonderful life is. ... Read more


11. The Iliad (Penguin Classics)
by Homer, Robert Fagles, Bernard MacGregor Walker Knox
list price: $15.95
our price: $10.37
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Asin: 0140275363
Catlog: Book (1998-10-01)
Publisher: Penguin Books
Sales Rank: 3511
Average Customer Review: 4.52 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

This timeless poem-more than 2,700 year old-still vividly conveys the horror and heroism of men and gods wrestling with towering emotions and battling amid devastation and destruction as it moves inexorably to its wrenching, tragic conclusion. Readers of this epic poem will be gripped by the finely tuned translation and enlightening introduction.

Translated by Robert Fagles
Introduction and Notes by Bernard
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Reviews (86)

5-0 out of 5 stars Fagles Does It Again
I have read several versions of the Iliad (both poetic and prose) and this version translated by Robert Fagles is the best I've read. Fagles has such an ability to translate the classics (as he has done with the Odyssey and the Theban Plays of Sophocles) so that they are readable to the modern English reader while still maintaining the lyricism of poetry. I'm also a sucker for introductions, glossaries, and translation notes and this edition has excellent versions of all three. While I would have liked even more notes to explain some of the myth references within the Iliad, the ones that are there are very explanatory. Bernard Knox (who also wrote the Notes) delivers a very erudite introduction that puts the "rage of Achilles" into context and gives an enlightening view of the humanity of the Gods who appear within. Highly recommended to those who want to get in touch with their Ancient Greek side.

5-0 out of 5 stars A readable Iliad in modern idiom
Robert Fagles's translation of Homer's Iliad is spiritually if not literally true to the original. Both versions repeat set speeches and descriptions in precisely the same words, and the translation exhibits a fairly regular rhythmic beat. But Homer's Greek was chanted, and the set passages were like refrains in which listeners could, if they chose, join in as a chorus. In English, the repetitions sometimes become tedious, especially when the same speech is given three times in two pages, as in the relay of Zeus's orders in Book II. Especially noteworthy is Bernard Knox's long and fascinating Introduction, a masterpiece of literary criticism and scholarship which conveys Homer's grim attitude toward war, the interplay of divine and human will, and the ancient concepts of honor, courage, and virility in the face of the stark finality of death. Knox also includes a succinct explanation of the quantitative, rather than accentual, basis of Greek (and Latin) verse. For easy readability, Fagles's translation is without rival. For elegance and poetry, however, I recommend Richmond Lattimore's older but still gripping and fluent translation.

1-0 out of 5 stars worthless
this book leads to two things:

a waste of time

a waste of money

3-0 out of 5 stars Something in excess.....
Admittedly, the Fagles translation of The Iliad is not the version I am reviewing. Mine was a prose translation, by Samuel Butler, of 'The Way of All Flesh' fame.....and the words inscribed in the Temple of Apollo, 'Nothing in Excess' came to mind as I read, as there is something in excess, and not a good something...

Having read the Odyssey in prose form, translated by E.V. Rieu, I had high hopes for what is described as the 'greatest war story ever told'....

With a more than impressive cast of characters to work with; Achilles, Paris, Hector, Helen of Troy, etc, etc, etc,....this story (and perhaps it is the translation) is really lacking when compared to The Odyssey in story content. Much of the book is used to name soldier after soldier who dies, along with his patronimic lineage...and how he was killed; be it sword, spear, rock, etc.

The story that inspires this book, the love of Paris and his affair with Helen, the 'face that launched a thousand ships' is a story ripe with potential...for both a good war story, a good love story, and a fascinating look at Ancient Greek war strategy, and the taking and sacking of a powerful city like Troy. In this incarnation, it doesn't live up to that potential, which was greatly disappointing.

The story read, to me, as a Classical equivalent to the United States' Vietnam War Memorial, listing name after name of slain soldiers and M.I.A.'s....so much so that the 'main characters' of the story are grievously overlooked, and it is near impossible to keep track of which side is winning, with name after name hurled at you.

The saving grace, for me, of this book is really the last several chapters...where the grief of Achilles for his slain lover, Patroclus, is chronicled. While never blatant in its descriptiveness, the love, admiration, and longing that Achilles held for Patroclus is MORE than evident here, even if Brad Pitt couldn't muster the bravery to play it on screen in his ho-hum turn as Achilles. Also entertaining is the impish interference of the Gods from time to time to favor one side or another...which was also 'scrubbed' from the film version, as it, according to Pitt, would not 'play well' with an audience.

I guess after reading the Odyssey, I anticipated a superior story here, and was disappointed with what I found. Though the subject matter is fascinating...and the recent Hollywood bastardization is appallingly NON-authentic, having read the story, I walked away from this book feeling let down.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Iliad of Homer in it's best Incarnation
Have you ever wanted to go back in time, to an era where powerful gods mingled with humans and great wars were fought, to an era of mythology? Well, welcome to The Iliad, the classic tale of the Trojan War. This ancient story tells us of forty-one of the most brutal days of the great Trojan War, the great war fought to retrieve Helen, the former wife of the Spartan king. It tells us of the rage of Achilles, the champion fighter of the Greeks, when the all-powerful Agamemnon does him a wrong.

All throughout this epic poem, the flowing verse creates a wonderful, musical experience that's a joy to read. There is wonderful depth of character and use of emotions everywhere in this exquisite book, allowing you to know the magnificent, rich characters inside and out. Descriptions are captivating and concise, resulting in extraordinarily clear mental images of what's happening. The story itself is so well crafted that it is almost believable.
I would highly recommend this absolutely fantastic book to anyone and everyone. The reading is very easy, and very rhythmic, so nearly anyone will be able to read it. The Iliad is definitely one the best books I have ever read and it deserves to be so for you.

Karl Griggs ... Read more


12. Collected Short Stories of Roald Dahl
by Roald Dahl
list price: $32.95
our price: $32.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0140158073
Catlog: Book (1992-06)
Publisher: South Asia Books
Sales Rank: 47224
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Macabre Humor !!
A most interesting collection of reading material by the Master of the twist-in-the-tale. Fifty-two entertaining stories full of black humor with unpredictable endings. The stories of "Over to You" are all about RAF fighters in WWII and at first I found them a bit boring compared to his other writings but after a while they grew on me too. For those who would like to know what stories this omnibus includes, here's a list:

Kiss,Kiss: The Landlady,William and Mary,The Way up to Heaven,Parson's Pleasure,Mrs.Bixby and the Colonel's Coat,Royal Jelly,Georgy Porgy,Genesis and Catastrophe,Edward the Conqueror,Pig and Champion of the World.

Over to You: Death of and Old Man,An African Story,A Piece of Cake,Madame Rosette,Katina,Yesterday was Beautiful,They Shall not Grow Old,Beware of the Dog,Only This and Someone like You.

Switch Bitch:The Visitor,The Great Switcheroo,The Last Act,and Bitch.

Someone Like You:Taste,Lamb to the Slaughter,Man from the South,The Soldier,My LadyLove My Dove,Dip in the Pool,Galloping Foxley,Skin,Poison, The Wish,Neck,The Sound Machine,Nunc Dimittis,The Great Automatic Grammatizator,Claud's Dog,The Ratcatcher,Rummins,Mr Hoddy and Mr Feasey.

And eight stories from
Tales of the Unexpected:
The Umbrella Man,Mr.Botibol,Vengeance is Mine Inc.,The Butler,Ah Sweet Mystery of Life, the Bookseller,The Hitchhiker and the Surgeon....

5-0 out of 5 stars Five stars every story
Dive into this right in the middle and you will find fantastic stories about sex, foolishness, human failings and greatness. Each story ends with a twist, which will make you giggle, ponder or contemplate. You will be left at the end of each story craving the next one. Among theese stories are the best in the english language and by far the peak of Dahls adult literature. Each makes a mark on human desires and silliness. He also pays great attention to the divisions between the sexes. The hunders of characters are so beautifuly defined in such a short period of space. You will identify yourselves with so many of their traits. At times you will root for one character. Other times you will laugh at them. In the end however you will remember myth of theese stories, with clarity. Quite possibly you will even pass them on, as folk lore. Dahl is not just for children. He is universal. Five Stars.

5-0 out of 5 stars Twists and turns!
These are some of the best short stories in the world by the master of the genre. The stories twist, they turn, they make you laugh and they make you gasp. It is amazing how he can take stories of the usual and the normal and twist them into something very unusual and abnormal.

If you like your good literature in little bites, you cannot go past a great short story. And these are really GREAT short stories!

5-0 out of 5 stars A superb collection of Roald Dahl's stories
This book is packed solid with 52 highly entertaining stories that have so many twists and turns you will not want to stop reading. Each well-written story is unique in its own way, whether it be amusing, thrilling, sad or altogether intriguing. The characters, even the dislikable ones, are so splendidly created and lifelike that you will be completely engrossed in their lives. This is a thoroughly enjoyable read for those who love a good twist-in-the-tale story. ... Read more


13. American Government: Readings and Cases, 15th Edition
by Peter Woll
list price: $46.60
our price: $46.60
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0321129776
Catlog: Book (2003-05-02)
Publisher: Longman
Sales Rank: 100251
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars Great book, clear and concise
Government text, and writings, and so on, can be very difficult to understand, but this book clearly explains what the text means, it also is organized greatly, I would recommend this book to anybody wanting a little extra knowledge about US Government ... Read more


14. Complete Poems and Plays,: 1909-1950
by T. S. Eliot
list price: $35.00
our price: $22.05
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Asin: 015121185X
Catlog: Book (1952-11-20)
Publisher: Harcourt
Sales Rank: 22365
Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Eliot's poetry ranges from the massively magisterial( The Waste Land), to the playfully pleasant (Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats). This volume of Eliot's poetry and plays offers the complete text of these and most all of Eliot's poetry,including the full text of Four Quartets. Winner of theNobel Prize in Literature, Eliot exerted a profound influence on his contemporaries in the arts generally and this collection makes his genius clear. ... Read more

Reviews (10)

5-0 out of 5 stars Eliot at his best
A wonderful collection of most of T.S. Eliot's poetry, including The Wasteland, The Hollow Men and Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats. Has extensive notes by the author. A must for all Eliot fans.

4-0 out of 5 stars 3-star collection of a 10-star poet's work
T. S. Eliot was arguably the greatest poet of the 20th century, but this collection is far from ideal. Alert readers will have already noticed the ominous qualifier "1909-1950" in the title; this book does *not* include the last two plays ("The Confidential Clerk" and "The Elder Statesman"), the last Ariel poem ("The Cultivation of Christmas Trees"), or the handful of Occasional Verses included in "Collected Poems 1909-1962." In addition, the typography in this volume is claustrophobic in the early poems. TSE's style is concentrated and intense, and virtually every collection of his work has the sense to begin each poem on a new page. This book, unfortunately, is the exception: it crams the poems together like classified ads.

The One True Eliot Collection was never published in the United States: "The Complete Poems and Plays of T. S. Eliot" (Faber and Faber, 1969 and later reprintings). It's worth looking on for a used copy since this book contains virtually all the published poems, all five plays, and even "Poems Published in Early Youth." In the meantime, U.S. readers are better off skipping the 1909-1950 volume. Get "Collected Poems 1909-1962" and buy the plays separately -- along with Old Possum's Book of You-Know-Whats, if you insist.

5-0 out of 5 stars I have heard the mermaids singing...
An excellent collection of the vast majority of his published works.

While Eliot lived into the sixties, there is an inevitable temptation to concentrate on his earlier classic works such as The Love Song Of J Alfred Prufrock, which yielded the above line, The Waste Land and The Hollow Men above all.

A lot of Eliot's perspectives involve psychological impotence, and a majestic failure to act, and be a part of events, of the World, the Life, if you like; such as in the lines "I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each. I do not think that they will sing for me."

Here, he writes about isolation and alienation, with accompanying non-participation. The impotent voyeur, as in Joyce's Ulysses, based on the classical myth. Joyce's Sirens are Lydia and Mina, the 'sexy barmaids' at the Ormond Hotel. Bloom can hear their siren song from the next bar, as they lure the male clientele to part with their cash, but he is separate from events; reflecting cyborg-like on their music which he terms 'musemathematics'.

While The Waste Land and The Hollow Men in particular were clearly written during a time of deep spiritual crisis, Eliot did transcend this period and they are not really representative of his later life philosophy.

One stanza from T S Eliot's The Hollow Men, became the source of Nevil Shute's book title On The Beach - this being his 1957 post-apocalyptic novel which later appeared as the 1963 Gregory Peck movie of the same name, about the last doomed survivors of a nuclear holocaust.

In this last of meeting places
We grope together
And avoid speech
Gathered on this beach of the tumid river

The J G Ballardesque inner landscape that Eliot creates, of decaying cities and civilizations and the encroaching spiritual desert, 'sunlight on a broken column', the final phase of extreme Entropy, the suppression of the Eternal Feminine, is just all part of the ultimate fear of nothingness or perhaps meaninglessness that has gnawed away at the human psyche for eons.

Just as Ballard's ancient nuclear test site in The Terminal Beach, replete with its decrepit bunkers and blockhouses, is 'a fossil of Time Future', so too is Eliot's Waste Land a metaphor for the human inability to perceive Time and to merge with the flow of the Universe.

A genius? Absolutely no question about it.

5-0 out of 5 stars the 3 modern greats: Dante, Shakespeare, Eliot
This authoritative volume of his poetry & plays is essential to every poetry collection. The first poem in his first published book, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, was astonishing to its first audiences & is now known as one of the greatest 20th century poems ever. Read any book of essays that includes 20th century poetry; that poem is talked about in it. But I don't mean to be reviewing as though T. S. Eliot was a man of one poem; he was a writer of such severe genius throughout his career that poetry since him has all been in his shadow. Within 10 years of his career, he had had a profounder influence on poetry as we know it than anybody else. Writer of incredibly dense poems, one might argue that with his wild & totally new ideas about he was the godfather of language poetry, but he was also had a fierce love for tradition, in his self-exile from the U.S. to England.

5-0 out of 5 stars Prometheus of modern poetry
I became familiar with Eliot's work chronologically, learning something new at each step. "Prufrock" introduced me to modern poetical structure, "The Waste Land" showed me how literary allusion can enrich verse, "Ash-Wednesday" refreshed the world of religious poetry, and the supernal "Four Quartets" was for me a metaphysical insight of the greatest beauty.

Eliot is without a doubt the finest poet of the 20th century, perhaps the finest poet ever. His contributions to the poets who came after him, and to literature in general, are persistently evident. Eliot doesn't always succeed, and many of his poems seem trite and pretentious, but when he succeeds he hits dead on with poetry perfect in form, balance, and sound. There is the man here, the poet as reflected in his own work, but there is also common human experience through looking at history ("The Waste Land") and meditating on Man's relationship with the Divine and the eternal (Ariel Poems, and most of his output after 1928).

HOWEVER, this edition of his "collected works," COMPLETE POEMS AND PLAYS: 1909-1950 lacks several last poems which can be found in COLLECTED POEMS 1909-1962. I recommend that edition, as tt is worth missing out on Eliot's plays in order to have a truly complete collection of his sublime verse. ... Read more


15. The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson
by Emily Dickinson
list price: $19.95
our price: $13.57
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0316184136
Catlog: Book (1976-01-30)
Publisher: Back Bay Books
Sales Rank: 4425
Average Customer Review: 4.59 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Emily Dickinson proved that brevity can be beautiful. Only now is her complete oeuvre--all 1,775 poems--available in its original form, uncorrupted by editorial revision, in one volume. Thomas H. Johnson, a longtime Dickinson scholar, arranged the poems in chronological order as far as could be ascertained (the dates for more than 100 are unknown). This organization allows a wide-angle view of Dickinson's poetic development, from the sometimes-clunky rhyme schemes of her juvenilia, including valentines she wrote in the early 1850s, to the gloomy, hell-obsessed writings from her last years. Quite a difference from requisite Dickinson entries in literary anthologies: "There's a certain Slant of light," "Wild Nights--Wild Nights!" and "I taste a liquor never brewed."

The book was compiled from Thomas H. Johnson's hard-to-find variorum from 1955. While some explanatory notes would have been helpful, it's a prodigious collection, showcasing Dickinson's intractable obsession with nature, including death. Poem 1732, which alludes to the deaths of her father and a onetime suitor, illustrates her talent:

My life closed twice before its close;
It yet remains to see
If Immortality unveil
A third event to me,

So huge, so hopeless to conceive
As these that twice befell.
Parting is all we know of heaven,
And all we need of hell.

The musicality of her punctuation and the outright elegance of her style--akin to Christina Rossetti's hymns, although not nearly so religious--rescue the poems from their occasional abstruseness. The Complete Poems is especially refreshing because Dickinson didn't write for publication; only 11 of her verses appeared in magazines during her lifetime, and she had long-resigned herself to anonymity, or a "Barefoot-Rank," as she phrased it. This is the perfect volume for readers wishing to explore the works of one of America's first poets. ... Read more

Reviews (37)

5-0 out of 5 stars Blasphemous! Erotic! Brilliant!
I can't think of "The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson" as simply a volume of poetry. Rather, it seems to me to be the uninhibited testament of a latter-day prophetess; it reads like the visions of a rare mind who pierced through the prisons of convention, and who dared to record what she perceived.

Forget any preconceptions you may have had about Dickinson, and start reading the book. As a whole, this collection is a stunning exploration of many themes and images: the world of nature, metaphysics, human emotion, and more. And throughout, these short verses radiate with psychological insight.

And if you read with the attentiveness that these poems deserve, you will discover many treasures. I have been a particular fan of Dickinson's "blasphemous" verses, in which she deconstructs the conventions of mainstream religiosity, and of her erotic poems, which celebrate the sensuous delights of the human and nonhuman worlds. Check out such gems as #324 ("Some keep the Sabbath going to Church-- / I keep it, staying at Home") or #339 ("My Cactus--splits her Beard / To show her throat"). Dickinson is full of surprises, all written in a style that is stunning and subtly seductive.

Dickinson writes, "Exhilaration--is within-- / There can no Outer Wine / So royally intoxicate / As that diviner Brand" (#383). But if you must rely on an "Outer Wine," dip into the "Complete Poems" and get high on Emily. It's an addiction that's good for you.

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the few poets who ever perfected a method.
I have 1000 words to tell what Dickinson means to me, an impossible task I gladly take up. I'd like to respond to others on this page. I once called Dickinson the "patron saint of lonely people everywhere," so I can identify with what one person said about teenage shut-ins. And I don't blame the person who snubbed her for not leaving a name--I'd be embarrassed to as well. Emily egotistical? The poet who wrote, "I'm nobody"? Wow. I love Dickinson's work so much because her vision of life is so fully her own, so at odds with the views of those around her. Can you imagine knowing you are the most brilliant lyric poet of your time (Whitman was more an epic or narrative poet), and knowing no one understood you? It's like trying to communicate in a foreign language that only you know. In fact, that is exactly what she did--she explodes the syntax, vocabulary, and syllabication of English and transforms it into her own private means of communication. She demands that we meet her on her ground. True, reading her work is not "fun"--there's too much pain and burning beauty in it to be an easy ride. She is not for everyone--only for those who see that life's disappointments both destroy and liberate us at the same time: comparing human hurts to trees destroyed by nature's forces, she says (in poem 314), "We--who have the Souls-- / Die oftener--Not so vitally--." Those may be the finest lines any poet ever wrote in English.

5-0 out of 5 stars Don't Waste Your Money...
On any other collection of Emily Dickinson's verse, because this is the one you're going to end up with, trust me. Beginners to Ms. Dickinson's poetry might be a little intimadated by this thick, thick book of untitled, sequentially numbered poems. But the thing about Dickinson's poems is that, while a lot aren't readily accessible, the ones that are (most of which invariably find their way into the smaller collections of her work) are so riveting that her readers inevitably end up wanting her complete collection on hand. Which is why they should just suck it up and buy this book in the first place.

If you've never read Emily Dickinson, read some of her more famous work online or in the library first to see if you're interested. If so, buy this book immediately. If you already have another collection of her work and consider yourself a fan, sell whatever other collection you have and buy this one.

5-0 out of 5 stars Emily Dickinson: A True Original
Emily Dickinson, who lived from 1830 to 1886, is to me the symbol of a poet with a unique and distinctive voice, a voice that seemed strange to her contemporaries but that gradually came to be recognized and cherished by lovers of poetry everywhere.

She led a life withdrawn from the world and, in some ways, reality as most of us know it, for she lived mainly in her imagination. She found no recognition in her day and only six of her poems were published, all modified and conventional-ized by the editors to suit their readers, who liked old-fashioned verse and were not appreciative of new styles and innovative forms. But that didn't seem to bother Dickinson too much. In fact, she didn't even seem to take too much pride in her talent, even if she knew the full extent of it. For one thing, she kept it very private, except with a few correspondents. In fact, her poetry wasn't even discovered until after her death. Her sister went through her belongings in her room and found the many, many loose scraps of paper covered with poems that had been written down through the decades by Dickinson. So, although she was never to attain fame and success in her lifetime ("fame is a bee. / It has a song-- / It has a sting-- / Ah, too, it has a wing"), she eventually had to settle for "fame of the mind"--recognition of her talent in her own mind. It was for posterity to discover her. That didn't take long. Her first collection was put out only a short 4 years after her death.

The specific reason why so little of her poetry found its way in print while she was still alive was, largely, because her use of metre, punctuation, and rhyme was so irregular and unusual. Editors mistook her offbeat application of these elements as flaws of "technical imperfections". They did not understand that these "imperfections" were not mistakes at all on her part, but rather, poetic experimentations. But their error can be well understood, of course, when one realizes that what Emily Dickinson was doing was something they just had not seen attempted, by anyone. Even Walt Whitman, another highly experimental American poet of the time, was doing something completely different from her poetry. But like his poetry, hers too was considered uncontrolled and eccentric. It seemed to follow no set of rules for verse in a time when poetry had very clearly defined rules of composition.

Times have completely changed and poets today enjoy the fredom of unlimited expression. No longer are there any set rules for this or that, and all styles, forms and uses of punctuation (or lack of) are acceptable. In fact, newness and innovation are now considered a plus, all thanks to true and pioneering originals like Emily Dickinson.

David Rehak
author of "Poems From My Bleeding Heart"

5-0 out of 5 stars Great poems!
What can I say? This book is great! ... Read more


16. The Gift: Poems by Hafiz the Great Sufi Master
by Hafiz, Daniel Ladinsky
list price: $15.00
our price: $10.20
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0140195815
Catlog: Book (1999-08-01)
Publisher: Penguin Books
Sales Rank: 5353
Average Customer Review: 4.13 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Hafiz, a secret Sufi, came to prominence in his day as a writer of love poems. That love transformed into an all-consuming passion for union with the divine. In The Gift, Daniel Ladinsky bestows on us the impassioned yet whimsical strains of Hafiz's ecstasy. Never forced or awkward, Ladinsky's Hafiz whispers in your ear and pounds in your chest, naming God in a hundred metaphors.

I once asked a bird,
"How is it that you fly in this gravity
Of darkness?"
She responded,
"Love lifts
Me."
Like Fitzgerald's version of Khayyam's Rubaiyat, the language of The Gift strikes a contemporary chord, resonating in the reader's mind and then in the heart. Ladinsky's language is plain, fresh, playful--dancing with an expert cadence that invites and surprises. If it is true, as Hafiz says, that a poet is someone who can pour light into a cup, reading Ladinsky's Hafiz is like gulping down the sun. --Brian Bruya ... Read more

Reviews (47)

4-0 out of 5 stars Like "digging potatoes" when you're hungry.
"Hold this book close to your heart," Hafiz (1320-1389) writes, "for it contains wonderful/ Secrets" (p. 207)--secrets that "encourage our hearts to dance" (p. 1), translator Daniel Ladinsky says. This 250-poem collection can be read "as a record of a human being's journey to perfect joy, perfect knowing, and perfect love" (pp. 16-17). It also draws comparisons to one of my all-time favorite books, Coleman Barks' ESSENTIAL RUMI (1995).

I am not qualified to comment on Ladinsky's translation of Hafiz, but Ladinsky triumphs in revealing Hafiz as a poet who sees God everywhere (p. 78)--in a barking dog, "in the ring of a hammer," in a raindrop, and "in the face of everyone" (p. 223). "Wherever/ God lays His glance," Hafiz writes, "Life starts/ Clapping" (p. 85). Some of the poems here soar higher than others. Most of them offer something memorable. All of them encourage us to "Wise Up" (p. 117). "Go running through the streets/ Creating divine chaos," Hafiz writes, "Go running through this world/ Giving love, giving love" (p. 59). Through his verse, Hafiz encourages us to love more, and to be happy.

Reading this book was like "digging potatoes" when you're hungry. In one of my favorite poems in the collection, "And For No Reason," Hafiz writes "And/ For no reason/ I turn into a leaf/ That is carried so high/ I kiss the sun's mouth/ And dissolve" (p. 23). In another poem, he writes "The/ Mind is ever a tourist/ Wanting to touch and buy new things/ Then toss them into an already/ Filled closet" (p. 132). And I won't soon forget the line, "End the mental/ Lawsuits/ That clog/ The/ Brain--" (p. 111).

I understand why many other reviewers have given this book their five-star ratings, but I have given it four-stars only when measured against Coleman Barks' five-star ESSENTIAL RUMI, which I highly recommend.

G. Merritt

1-0 out of 5 stars Hold your nose here!
I have got no idea whether these translations are genuine or not. The only thing I know, for sure, is that they really stink.

Ya, for sure, after all these eons, the Sun does not say to the Earth, "You owe me." How completely stupid. Sometimes, people owe one another, and sometimes they don't. This nonsense about a speaking Sun and a listening Earth doesn't bring anything to the table!

"I saw the Earth smiling" ??

Oh, get a clue. Go buy some real poetry, not this nonsense!! "Real" poetry might be (take your pick) Li Po, Chaucer, Shakespeare, Yeats, Marlowe, Dante, Virgil, Homer, Eliot, Pound... and I'm not going to waste any more time here! Outta here!

1-0 out of 5 stars Understanding the Ladinsky problem!
I truly do think that more people should pay attention to their teachers. In the case of this book by Mr. Ladinsky, there are two completely separate questions:

1. Do you (did you) like the poems in this book?
2. Were these poems written by Mr. Ladinsky, or by Hafez?

It is very important not to confuse these two questions! The fact that you like the poems in this book does NOT mean that they were written by Hafez, any more than it means that they were written by Shakespeare.

I don't know a lot of Persian (Farsi) myself, but my own reading over the past few decades, plus some input from a dearly beloved friend who is a professor of Persian poetry, tells me this: Hafez NEVER (or very rarely) uses the word "God." That would be "khoda" in Persian, or "Allah" in Arabic. You can read for entire weeks in Hafez, and never find the word "khoda" or "Allah," unless it is in some formula, such as "al-hamdullah."

So how does Mr. Ladinsky explain this?

5-0 out of 5 stars Look at the smile on the earth's lips...
Hafiz says, "Look at the smile on the earth's lips this morning she laid again with me last night." Well, I can't see the earth's mouth but I do know that my own has been smiling more than usual especially when reading these poems/renderings that have a higher alcohol content that anything a store hawks.
And speaking of alcohol: I don't think Amazon should hand any drunk monkey a microphone and let them smear this remarkable book out of ignorance or jealousy as some of these tight-pursed one star raters apparantly did.

I recently saw a lovely Hafiz greeting card with this line that
I found so deep, significant and touching. It read:

"God courts us with the beauty of this world."

I could not recommend this book enough! Right on Hafiz.

1-0 out of 5 stars Was Hafez a Sufi, much less a Sufi Master?
In the world of Islam, "Sufi" refers to a certain type of religious mystic. The word "suf" (pronounced "soof") merely means "wool," and a "Soofi" was a religious mystic who wore a particular type of woolen cloak -- as an emblem of poverty and righteousness.

Now, one very interesting thing about Hafez (the real Hafez) was that he was a religious mystic who bitterly hated the orthodox Muslims of his time. That is to say, he found his own love of God in his own way, and avoided the ways of the sheep.

That all seems easy enough, except for this: Hafez also hated the Sufis! Every time he mentions them, and their righteous woolen cloaks, he throws them in the same trash-heap with the orthodox Muslims!

All you have to do is open the book that he wrote, and read. Hafez is a very unlikely candidate for a "Great Sufi Master." He bitterly disliked Sufis!

Ah well! The world goes on! ... Read more


17. Odyssey (Penguin Classics)
by Homer, E. V. Rieu, D. C. H. Rieu
list price: $10.00
our price: $8.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0140449116
Catlog: Book (2003-04-01)
Publisher: Penguin Books
Sales Rank: 61822
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18. Refusing Heaven
by JACK GILBERT
list price: $25.00
our price: $16.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1400043654
Catlog: Book (2005-03-08)
Publisher: Knopf
Sales Rank: 257108
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19. The Family of Man
by Edward Steichen, Carl Sandburg
list price: $19.95
our price: $13.57
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0870703412
Catlog: Book (2002-07-15)
Publisher: Museum of Modern Art, New York
Sales Rank: 37109
Average Customer Review: 4.88 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (17)

5-0 out of 5 stars This book is a classic - timeless and striking.
The Family of Man - first published in 1955 - is the pictorial record of one of the most riveting exhibitions of photography of all time. The book, which contains some text, is a poignant treasure of the human condition - from birth to death. It shows man's relation and connection to life, regardless of country or language and all that we share through love, pain, rituals and simply coping. The phrase " a picture is worth a thousand words" comes alive in The Family of Man.

5-0 out of 5 stars A brilliant presentation of the human spirit on film
This book details the Family of Man photography exhibit composed of photos that Edward Steichen collected from photographers throughout the world. From the intro by Carl Sandburg (his brother in law), to the photographs of birth, life, death and the emotions and events in between, the book shows true humanity through the eyes of the camera. Featuring works by many famous, but yet unknown photographers, this book is a true treasure. When you glance at its pages you will discover new perspectives, or maybe something inside yourself. This is not a picture book, but a photo biography of the human race. If you are tired of coffee table books that sit unopened, pick up this book a few times and share it with your friends. You will read it again and again, discovering new secrets with every turn of a page.

5-0 out of 5 stars Most wonderful wonderful and yet again wonderful
First time I saw the pictures collected by Edward Steichen was in the permanent museum of the exhibition, Clervaux in Luxembourg.

I was keeped almost in silence from entering to exiting and the message of the pictures was striking to me then - and 15 years later it still is.

This is a collection of pictures from all the world, picked between Thousands to be the best pictures to describe the family of man as we ALL are. No matter of colour, religion, origin or political believe we are all sons, fathers, lovers, hungry, thirsty, at times fearful and at times playful - WE ARE ALL ALIKE!

This message is as important now as it was in the 50` and looking at extreemist and the war of terror, you can only wonder how come we have learned nothing in 50 years.

The book brings me back to Clervaux and the thoughts about life, and each time I stop at a different picture or text, that captures the essence of where I am at that time of life. The book is universal not only to man but also to moods.

However happy I am to own the book it is nothing compared with the exhibition in Luxembourg. I can only say that I returned and will return again, and for the full experience of these pictures I will recommend it to all.

5-0 out of 5 stars Note that all (but one) customer reviews are 5 stars!!!
This is simply the best collections of photographs that I have ever seen. The book dates from the 50's, but the subject matter... humans... are the same today. Buy this for yourself, of as a special gift for a special person, and you'll not regret it. (I only wish it were still published in hard cover)

5-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, Thoughtful
I have given this book as a gift many times over the years, and can't recommend it enough. The photographs are beautiful, giving the viewer a sense of what is common in the overall human experience. Simple, straight-forward in content, and very moving. An essential volume of photographs. ... Read more


20. The Complete Collected Poems of Maya Angelou
by MAYA ANGELOU
list price: $24.95
our price: $17.46
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 067942895X
Catlog: Book (1994-09-13)
Publisher: Random House
Sales Rank: 2806
Average Customer Review: 4.42 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Brought together for the first time here are all of Maya Angelou's published poems -- including "On the Pulse of Morning," her inaugural poem -- in a handsome hardcover edition. ... Read more

Reviews (26)

5-0 out of 5 stars What were you reading?
I looked back at some of the customer reviews of Maya's collected verse volume, and was astonished to find a one star rating by someone who simply doesn't understand the complexity within the simplicity. I would imagine this person to be well educated, intellectual, and with much of their ego invested in their intelligence. They missed the mark-- make that the whole target with that misguided review. The words Miss Angelou chooses are for the versions of her truth, and she comes from the simplest place of all-- the heart. In order to express the complexities of the heart, one must return to the simplicity of the child, and the utmost economy of words. The poems of Maya Angelou are brilliant and that customer can go take a long walk on a short pier.

5-0 out of 5 stars An Artists Signature Piece
This was a wonderful book, in which all the poems seem to tell a story, that nearly everyone has been through at one time in their life. Maya Angelou has written exactly what is on her mind, clearly, and simply creating a portrait of her past. Though many of the poems have to do with the experience of being black, I would recommend this book to anyone.

3-0 out of 5 stars Well...
I breezed through this one, and I have to say her autobiographies are far superior to her poems. I didn't even have the heart to understand most of them. The style is not exactly what I can call "delicious". I'm just not a fan of Maya when it comes to poetry. BUT I have to say I enjoyed the poems in "I Shall not be Moved". They just contained a different flavor in them. One can easily tell that she had grown when she wrote these ones. (I'm assuming it's her latest of all the other poetry books). Or maybe she just put more effort into it, or perhaps just decided to use a different style. I liked "On the Pulse of Morning" as well.

5-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, simply beautiful
Maya Angelou's words absolutely captivate me throughout the series. Each poem opens a new door but reliterate the themes of oppression, struggle, freedom, and so much more. Two particular favorite short poems are The Lesson and Contemporary Announcement.
Maya Angelou's continuous effort to live life through music, through dance, through writing reflects in The Lesson. Even though the poem seems rather morbid through the description of "rotting flesh and worms" "old tombs", "veins collapse", in the end it emphasizes the importance of living life and enjoying life until the last breath. So the lesson to be learned from "The Lesson" is to love life and live life.
Maya Angelou's past reflects in most of her poems. In "Contemporary Announcement", she portrayed the harshness of living from day to day in the ghettos. The protagonist lives from day to day, from paycheck to paycheck, in its sadness and happiness. When the character has money, the family join together in happiness with "cook the cow" and "ring the big bells". And when there is no money, the family must live in darkness and in fear, that they must "hold your breath" and "take my heart in your hand." Overall, the poem portrays the harshness of the working class which experienced by 80% of Americans.

1-0 out of 5 stars Most Over-Rated American Poet
Maya Angelou is a media creation. Her fame is fed by her image rather than her writing. If you'd like to read a GOOD African American female poet check out Rita Dove or Lucile Clifton or Gwendolyn Brooks. ... Read more


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