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    $11.53 $10.42 list($16.95)
    1. Teaching with Fire: Poetry That
    $10.20 $10.05 list($15.00)
    2. Delights and Shadows
    $16.29 $15.80 list($23.95)
    3. The Wild Braid: A Poet Reflects
    $14.28 $12.87 list($21.00)
    4. The Rose That Grew From Concrete
    $18.15 list($27.50)
    5. Slouching Toward Nirvana : New
    $12.89 $12.45 list($18.95)
    6. The Moments, the Minutes, the
    $13.96 $11.91 list($19.95)
    7. The Melancholy Death of Oyster
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    8. Refusing Heaven
    $17.46 $16.22 list($24.95)
    9. The Complete Collected Poems of
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    10. Sailing Alone Around the Room
    $57.95 $19.99
    11. Perrine's Sound and Sense : An
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    12. In the Palm of Your Hand:The Poet's
    $23.62 $18.50 list($37.50)
    13. The Poetry of Robert Frost : The
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    14. Why I Wake Early
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    15. The Song of Hiawatha (Everyman
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    16. Blinking with Fists
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    17. Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained
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    18. Where Shall I Wander : New Poems
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    19. Small Wonder : Essays
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    20. Leaves of Grass (Bantam Classics)

    1. Teaching with Fire: Poetry That Sustains the Courage to Teach
    by Parker J. Palmer, Tom Vander Ark
    list price: $16.95
    our price: $11.53
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0787969702
    Catlog: Book (2003-10-03)
    Publisher: Jossey-Bass
    Sales Rank: 8788
    Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    Reclaim Your Fire

    "Teaching with Fire is a glorious collection of the poetry that has restored the faith of teachers in the highest, most transcendent values of their work with children....Those who want us to believe that teaching is a technocratic and robotic skill devoid of art or joy or beauty need to read this powerful collection. So, for that matter, do we all."
    –Jonathan Kozol, author of Amazing Grace and Savage Inequalities

    "When reasoned argument fails, poetry helps us make sense of life. A few well-chosen images, the spinning together of words creates a way of seeing where we came from and lights up possibilities for where we might be going....Dip in, read, and ponder; share with others. It's inspiration in the very best sense."
    –Deborah Meier, co-principal of The Mission Hill School, Boston and founder of a network of schools in East Harlem, New York

    "In the Confucian tradition it is said that the mark of a golden era is that children are the most important members of the society and teaching is the most revered profession. Our jour ney to that ideal may be a long one, but it is books like this that will sustain us - for who are we all at our best save teachers, and who matters more to us than the children?"
    –Peter M. Senge, founding chair, SoL (Society for Organizational Learning) and author of The Fifth Discipline

    Those of us who care about the young and their education must find ways to remember what teaching and learning are really about. We must find ways to keep our hearts alive as we serve our students. Poetry has the power to keep us vital and focused on what really matters in life and in schooling. Teaching with Fire is a wonderful collection of eighty-eight poems from such well-loved poets as Walt Whitman, Langston Hughes, Billy Collins, Emily Dickinson, and Pablo Neruda. Each of these evocative poems is accompanied by a brief story from a teacher explaining the significance of the poem in his or her life's work. This beautiful book also includes an essay that describes how poetry can be used to grow both personally and professionally.

    Teaching With Fire was written in partnership with the Center for Teacher Formation and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Royalties from this book will be used to fund scholarship opportunities for teachers to grow and learn. ... Read more

    Reviews (4)

    5-0 out of 5 stars A companion for teachers
    I begin by acknowledging that I am both a fan of poetry and a fan of the work of Parker Palmer, whose writings spawned the Courage to Teach retreats for teachers that take place across the country. The poets included in this volume are among my favorite including Rumi, Billy Collins, Mary Oliver, Rilke, and many more. The book includes a section wtih ideas on how to use poetry in all kinds of settings, not just schools. I also know some of the teachers who contributed to this book. These are real people who do some of the most important work there is to do--teaching--and who are as a group underappreciated. When I read these poems and the moving words of the teachers who selected the poems, I feel like I am entering into sacred territory. There are many moments in this book illuminating the terrain of a teacher's work and a teacher's soul. Poetry speaks to the heart, and the use of poetry for our own renewal is what this collecton is about. I highly recommend it, and I know most teachers and parents of school age children would love this as a gift.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Gift That Keeps Giving
    This collection of poetry will keep on giving to anyone interested in the power of poetry to sustain and inspire or in the fragile and humane work of teaching. At first I read it cover to cover. Since I've been called back many times to certain poems or stories. Each poem is accompanied by a short story about what the particular poem has meant to the teacher who submitted it. Sometimes it's hard to tell which is more powerful--the poem or the teacher's story. In this little volume lie the seeds of true school reform! Read it and pass it on.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Words to Inspire Those Who Teach & Learn
    This fine collection of 88 poems introduced by the educators who submitted them gives readers a new appreciation for the power poetry can provide to those who teach as well as those who learn. Though all these poems may not be new to you, the deeply-felt reflections on the opposite pages will give you a new appreciation for them.

    Editors Sam Intrator and Megan Scribner weaved together these well-known poets with everyday educators so readers can take inspiration on any given page without a sequential read-through. Or, by choosing a section such as "Holding On," one can select Rubin Alves' poem "Tomorrow's Child" and take heart and courage from the commentary by Sarah Smith, academic director of Rainier Scholars in the state of Washington. "I met this poem with the heaviest of hearts, a depleted spirit, a feeling that I was failing myself and my own personal mission." And later, "I recommitted myself to the work. I reclaimed my hope and belief in the notion that education could truly be the great equalizer."

    Although I'm not a teacher, I am a life-long learner and encouraged that such a book is available to help support and restore the faith of the people we put in charge of our childrens' education. Nothing could be more important or more vital.

    5-0 out of 5 stars All my FAVORITE POEMS!!!!!
    I've long loved poetry, but have struggled to use it successfully in the classroom. This book is absolutely PERFECT for me! First of all, it has poems from my favorite poets like Rilke, Marge Piercy, Mary Oliver, Annie Dillard, Billy Collins, Anne Sexton, and a whole bunch of others. And then there's wonderful poetry by authors I didn't know until now. I'm always delighted to find a new poet!

    But the icing on the cake? The short introductions to each poem, each written by a different teacher. The one that really spoke to me was the teacher who taught "There But for the Grace" by Wislawa Szymborska on Sept. 12, 2001. It really shows the power of poetry in students' lives! ... Read more

    2. Delights and Shadows
    by Ted Kooser
    list price: $15.00
    our price: $10.20
    (price subject to change: see help)
    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

    3. 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
    (price subject to change: see help)
    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

    4. The Rose That Grew From Concrete
    by Tupac Shakur
    list price: $21.00
    our price: $14.28
    (price subject to change: see help)
    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

    5. 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

    6. 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

    7. The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy : and Other Stories
    by Tim Burton
    list price: $19.95
    our price: $13.96
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0688156819
    Catlog: Book (1997-11-05)
    Publisher: HarperEntertainment
    Sales Rank: 1400
    Average Customer Review: 4.64 out of 5 stars
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    This unassuming hardcover in black buckram with a dark lavender title plate is the door into a world of twisted pleasures. Filmmaker Tim Burton (EdwardScissorhands, Beetlejuice, The Nightmare Before Christmas) tells 23winsomely macabre stories about boys and girls who don't fit in. Their bodies are misshapen, their habits are odd, and their parents are appalled by them. But they do try hard to be human, like poor unwanted Mummy Boy, who's "a bundle of gauze": he goes for a walk in the park with his mummy dog. Some kids are having "a birthday party for a Mexican girl." They think Mummy Boy is a piñata: "They took a baseball bat and whacked open his head. Mummy Boy fell to the ground; he finally was dead. Inside of his head were no candy or prizes, just a few stray beetles of various sizes." For all its simple humor, The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy & OtherStories is a peculiarly disturbing book about the violence that children suffer. It is illustrated in pen and ink, watercolor, and crayon. The themes and imagery are at a young-adult to adult level. ... Read more

    Reviews (87)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Written As a Children's Book, But Best For an Older Kid
    I bought this handsome collection of short poems and stories by Tim Burton, not only because he is my most favorite director, but also because I was very interested in what his poetry and stories were like. Although "The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories" is written as a children's book, the content consists of some sexual,drug, and just plain macabre stuff. For example, in a couple poems, like "Robot Boy," a line goes, "He never forgave her unholy alliance: a sexual encounter with a kitchen appliance." Also, to tell you about the scarce yet present drug content, in the poem called, "Sue", the beginning is, "To avoid a lawsuit, we'll just call her Sue (or "that girl who likes to sniff lots of glue"). And lastly,to show you that macabre stuff is present, I can't recite a specific line because all of them contain some or lots of macabre. But if you truly love Tim Burton, then this book is a good thing to have. I like the poems in this collection- they are fun to read over and over, and a great addition to your bookshelf. I just suggest that you don't buy it for a child or an early reader- it is really for an older kid (like 12 and up) to adult. All in all, I enjoyed this book, and anyone who loves Tim Burton, likes macabre comedy, and can be mature to some very light adult content will enjoy having this book!

    P.S.- I loved "The Girl with Many Eyes"! (It was a clean and funny poem)!

    P.S.S.- Not all of the poems contain drug or sexual content!! In fact, most are clean and clever!

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good, but not for everyone.
    I bought this book since I'm a fan of Tim Burton's movies (Edward Scissorhands is one of the most beautiful movies I've seen). I appreciate Burton's unique drawing style, and I thought I would enjoy this book. However, it wasn't quite what I expected. I had in mind something more similar to Edward Gorey's "The Gashlycrumb Tinies" or, at worst, something akin to Angus Oblong's "Creepy Susie." And while it does have some similarity, I found it much less entertaining. The stories are often little more than a reiteration of the title, and the verse in the longer stories strikes me as uneven in rhythm (which may not bother everyone, but i'm admittedly uptight about things like that.) One solidly redeeming feature about this book is the impeccable design, however. The hardcover edition is beautifully bound, and the book is cleverly and neatly laid out. Graphic design students might want to take note of this book solely for that feature, if it can be found cheaply.

    In summary, I'd say the book is for hardcore Burton fans, or those who are more open to highly atypical stories. I give it three stars for effort and design.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Super
    This book is the most imaginative thing i have ever read. Not only did i enjoy the artwork i also enjoyed something i never have enjoyed before...POETRY! He made it so fun to read each story. Granted it took me a grand total of fifteen minutes to read the whole thing i still loved every story it had to offer! I hope Tim expresses his poetic genius again very soon!

    5-0 out of 5 stars This book ROCKS!!!
    This book has to be one of THE BEST books I have ever read. Five stars is not good enough to descripe this, it should have more like 58 stars! It was written by Tim Burton so only the best is expected, seeing how he is one of the best directors in the history of forever. I've spent many hours reading this book, and have done more than 18 schools projects about it. It's that good!!!

    4-0 out of 5 stars A touching collection
    If you are a fan of Tim Burton's work, then I recommend this to you in the fullest. If you are not, then I recommend you stay away from it.

    I picked this book up on a whim, without ever having read anything by Tim Burton. I loved the Nightmare Before Christmas and enjoy the work of people like Angus Oblong, Jhonen Vasquez, Roman Dirge, and Gorey-- so I figured, why not?

    Although it's not the best poetry ever (I'm not a poet, I don't know very much about rhythm or anything like that), I found them to be very touching. The layout is very nice and pleasing, and some of the poems are laugh out loud funny, while others are starkly sad and leave a big impression on the reader. The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy was strikingly sad in my opinion, and I nearly cry when I read the poem "Anchor Baby".

    The book itself is a beautifully bound hardcover book-- it looks very nice sitting on a shelf, and I think it would be great to have sitting on a living room coffee table (..that is, if I didn't live in a dorm)

    The ONLY reason I did not give this 5 stars is because it is a little bit pricey, in my opinion. I would consider buying a second hand copy, if possible. ... Read more

    8. Refusing Heaven
    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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    9. The Complete Collected Poems of 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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    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

    10. Sailing Alone Around the Room : New and Selected Poems
    list price: $13.95
    our price: $10.46
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0375755195
    Catlog: Book (2002-09-17)
    Publisher: Random House Trade Paperbacks
    Sales Rank: 3366
    Average Customer Review: 4.18 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    Sailing Alone Around the Room, by America’s Poet Laureate, Billy Collins, contains both new poems and a generous gathering from his earlier collections The Apple That Astonished Paris, Questions About Angels, The Art of Drowning, and Picnic, Lightning. These poems show Collins at his best, performing the kinds of distinctive poetic maneuvers that have delighted and fascinated so many readers. They may begin in curiosity and end in grief; they may start with irony and end with lyric transformation; they may, and often do, begin with the everyday and end in the infinite. Possessed of a unique voice that is at once plain and melodic, Billy Collins has managed to enrich American poetry while greatly widening the circle of its audience. ... Read more

    Reviews (49)

    5-0 out of 5 stars This Is Guy Is The Real Thing, I Kid You Not...
    Billy Collins is a poet of body and soul, someone who knows the bite and pleasure of a turn of phrase that enlivens like a shot of pretty-good Irish whisky. "American" is too narrow a designation for poems whose aim is to direct us to the truly human--the whimsical and the sorrowful, the oddly-tough animal underlying that humanity. For those who, like Collins, have the mantle and designation of "master poet" bestowed upon them repeatedly the trick is to earn that praise. Billy Collins has certainly earned whatever well-intentioned men and women may say of him, especially the good: his is a finely honed voice and, at times, that voice wickers into a wonderfully quirky track of experience that never excludes the accidental and fleeting. One cannot say enough about such good and decent men, or their works.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Refreshingly devoid of tweed and pomp
    If you haven't bought a book of poetry in a while (or, perhaps, ever), Billy Collins's most recent collection is a good choice. His poems are unfailingly accessible and entertaining, so easy to read they make poetry look as if it's easy to write. Collins abhors lofty, incomprehensible verse and yet manages to reconcile his down home persona with an obvious love of good wine, good jazz, and reference books of varying sizes. I'm off now to the park with my dog, my coffee, and my copy of Billy Collins.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Shorts & Blue Jeans
    Living in a beach community is a shorts and blue jeans kind of life. The comfortable and casual, "blue jeans kinda style" poetry of Billy Collins, our country's latest Poet Laurete, is a perfect match for the beach life style. In his latest collection of poems, Sailing Alone Around the Room, a collection of new and selected poems from previous works, Collins shows us that poetry can be fun. It can entertain you, make you laugh at the same time it gives you ideas to ponder. In his poem "Introduction to Poetry" Collins asks us not to "tie the poem to a chair with rope and torture a confession out of it; don't begin beating it with a hose to find out what it really means." A poem is whatever you want it to be. A book of poetry is a house where poems live.

    Being a first time reader of Collins' poetry and vowing to take his advice, I let the poems in Sailing Alone Around the Room read to me. I found it was like eating a tantalizing dessert at a gourmet restaurant. The poems slid into me effortlessly, creating an explosion of moving pictures in my mind. They left me hungry for another taste and then another. When I was full and had no room for another I had to push myself away from the table so that I could properly digest what had been fed into me. The author had become an old friend and we were just having this wonderful converation as we had done so many times before.

    In a recent interview, Collins explained the quick connection to his work experienced by many readers encountering him for the first time: "As I'm writing, I'm always reader conscious. I have one reader in mind, someone who is in the room with me, and who I'm talking to, and I want to make sure I don't talk too fast, or too glibly. Usually I try to create a hospitable tone at the beginning of a poem. Stepping from the title to the first lines is like stepping into a canoe. A lot of things can go wrong." Nothing goes "wrong" in "Nostalgia", one of my favorites.

    Here's how it begins:


    Remember the 1340's? We were doing a dance called
    the Catapult.
    You always wore brown, the color craze of the decade,
    and I was draped in one of those capes that were popular,
    the ones with unicorns and pomegranates in needlework.
    Everyone would pause for beer and onions in the afternoon,
    and at night we would play a game called "Find the Cow."
    Everything was hand-lettered then, not like today.

    And here's how it ends:

    As usual, I was thinking about the moments of the past,
    letting my memory rush over them like water
    rushing over the stones on the bottom of a stream.
    I was even thinking a little about the future, that place
    where people are doing a dance we cannot imagine,
    a dance whose name we can only guess.

    Sailing Alone Around the Room is a book of poems to keep close by. Forget your day timers, your calenders, cell phones, palm pilots, your American Express cards. Just take this book of poems with you. Whenever you are in need of a snack, a taste of observation, a chuckle to give you a lift, a thought to ponder, a feeling of awe and wonder, a sense of belonging, the poems will be there for you, just waiting.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Agreement with the reviewer from Santa Barbara
    I can't say it better than the reviewer from Santa Barbara. Billy Collins is worth reading and re-reading and enjoying like hard candy rolling in your mouth.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Implicated in the Death of American Verse
    Billy Collins has done more than any other single person to promote banality, stylistic conservatism, and cuteness in American verse. Those who place him at the level of a national poet like Frost miss the point. Certainly as Frost was interpreted by his average reader he was a pretty 'easy' poet, but his poems were elegant in that way: they opened up to very serious readings and were filled with a finally overwhelming negative force. Collins lacks all force whatsoever. He is a hack and he knows it. Mr. Collins, on the off-chance that in a bout of insecurity you've come to this page to read your reviews I just want you to know this: you must come to a decision: either to start writing serious verse or to give it up all together and retreat to greating cards. Programs like your poetry channel on airlines makes me sick and it degrades poetry. Poetry should not be easy. There is nothing classist in this evaluation. The elements at this point that leave great works closed to some and not others are less class-based than ever before. It is rather more a matter of an exertion of meaningful energy on the part of the reader. Certainly those who spend their evenings watching sitcoms will have a hard time with Stevenson, they will want to consume and find that they are asked to produce. Some will turn away, others will make the effort and discover what rewards hard work of the imagination and intellect can yield. Why, Mr. Collins, are you working to undermine this? Why are you working to perpetuate and legitimate a way of reading that is driving high literary culture into extinction? ... Read more

    11. Perrine's Sound and Sense : An Introduction to Poetry
    by Thomas R. Arp, Greg Johnson
    list price: $57.95
    our price: $57.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0838407463
    Catlog: Book (2004-05-14)
    Publisher: Heinle
    Sales Rank: 403452
    Average Customer Review: 3.83 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    An introduction to poetry presented in a compact and concise anthology, SOUND AND SENSE continues the tradition of offering clear, precise writing and practical organization initiated by Laurence Perrine years ago. ... Read more

    Reviews (6)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Almost a great resource (that I'd give 3.5 Stars, actually)
    My first exposure to Sound and Sense was in high school, and, at the time, I found the book so valuable a resource that I later purchased a copy. Post-college, my views have changed somewhat.

    If the tone of the writing was not so condescending, this could be a great book. It defines most of the terms necessary to understand critical texts on poetry, including those analyses related to meter, style, and tone. I find the questions after each poem to be helpful and thought-provoking. That said, it is frustrating to me that the author presents ideas and arguments in absolutes (must, must not, never, always, etc.) and then asserts that the logic that MUST be applied to point A CANNOT be applied to point B (but maybe I have spent too many hours working with lawyers).

    My suggestion would be to read the text with a grain of salt. Glean the terminology, answer the questions posed at the end of each poem, follow their suggestions of rereading and considering the many facets of poetry, and try to overlook the condescending manner in which the authors display their opinions as fact.

    4-0 out of 5 stars a little at a time
    I've been nibbling away at a 20 year old edition of this book for a few years in my spare time, and almost every bite has increased my abitity to appreciate poetry. I like the examples, most of them seem pretty old, Frost is about as modern as he gets, but thats ok with me. You might find this book a little annoying if it was required reading in a course, sometimes it asks more questions than it answers.

    1-0 out of 5 stars "Sense" without Sensibility
    English class has never been my favorite class, but poetry has always been one of my better topics. This year - Sophmore High School English - I was required to buy Sound and Sense for class. This is the worst poetry book I have ever read. While the collection of poems is wonderful, the text written by Arp is terrible. Arp comes off as condescending and mean spirited, making the reading of the book a chore. His definitions of the various poetical terms are solid, but you could just as easily get them out of a dictionary. Arp tells the reader that poetry cannot be beautiful unless it concers the perfect love, flowers, or fuzzy animals. He equates the reading of poetry to listening to a radio, and says that if one does not like a critically aclaimed poem, one's tuner is on the wrong station. He leaves nothing to free will, preferring to lead a flock of sheep into an abyss of bad writing over allowing someone to disagree with him here or there. Chapters on "Good Poetry and Bad" do not leave the reader with a love of poetry, nor does the book as a whole make me want to spout sonnets. There are many better collections of poetry around. The poems within Sound and Sense can as easily be found in the Norton or another anthology. As for its educational value, I find that it offers very little by the way of insight, and instead gushes half baked opinions. Do yourselves a foavor and skip this one. You'll learn more about poetry from Dr. Seuss.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Superb Introduction to Poetry and Poetic Form
    I came across an earlier edition of Sound and Sense a few years ago. At first glance the slighty yellowed text appeared foreboding with chapters like denotation and connotation, imagery, figurative lanaguage, allusion, tone, rhythm and meter, sound and meaning, and so forth. I found it hard to imagine a less lifeless approach to poetry. However, the text did seem to contain a sizeable anthology as an appendix and poetry was abundant in every chapter. I reasoned that I could skip the poetic structure discussions and simply read the poetry.

    But from the beginning I found Perrine's style and approach to be stimulating, rather than analytical. Throughout we are immersed in poetry, great poetry, familiar poetry, unfamiliar poetry. Perrine argues that poetry needs to be read and reread carefully for full understanding and appreciation. We need to learn to think about poetry with some seriousness, but not in a cold, calculating manner. We approach new poetry with our eyes and ears open, our senses alive.

    Yes, as other reviewers point out, Sound and Sense is structured and does methodically explore poetic forms in some detail. But this is not a drawback. It is actually an aid to understanding. Perrine manages to achieve his instructional objective without diluting his central message - poetry is to be enjoyed. He never forgets that his subject is poetry, and not poetic form and structure.

    I have since learned that Perrine's text is still in use today some 45 years after publication of the first edition. How can that be? Few textbooks achieve nine editions (nine editions, not just nine printings). Even the title change signifies respect; it is no longer simply Sound and Sense, it is "Perrine's Sound and Sense". I highly recommend Perine's text to anyone willing to invest a little time and study to poetry. The return will be worthwhile. I give Sound and Sense five stars.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Helpful, well-written
    As a University student at Canada, I found this book much more helpful than my profs explanations, which do not go as in detail the elements of poetry. ... Read more

    12. In the Palm of Your Hand:The Poet's Portable Workshop
    by Steve Kowit
    list price: $14.95
    our price: $10.17
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0884481492
    Catlog: Book (1995-06-01)
    Publisher: Tilbury House Publishers
    Sales Rank: 4892
    Average Customer Review: 4.91 out of 5 stars
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    Steve Kowit believes, and rightly so, that poetry should show, not tell. Thesame could be said for good teaching, which is what makes this volume so remarkable. InIn the Palm of Your Hand Kowit employs more than 100 poems and excerpts toillustrate his discussions on everything from metaphor to meter to metaphysics. Workingyour way through this book--and it is work--is like sitting in on a terrific creative-writingseminar, minus the criticism (both constructive and destructive) of fellow students. If yougo by the book, you'll have written at least 69 poems by the end. Because of itsexplication of the basic tenets of poetry, In the Palm of Your Hand might bemistaken for a beginners' book only. That would be a shame. There are so many goodideas here that more experienced poets won't want to miss out; Kowit has lots of excitingways to invigorate one's writing. (Here's a favorite quick tip: "A good rule ofthumb is never to use a word that you're proud of.") In the Palm of YourHand is also recommended for members of writing groups who are interested inimposing some kind of structure on their meetings. ... Read more

    Reviews (11)

    5-0 out of 5 stars This is a wonderful book!
    This is the best book I've read on poetry writing (and I've read a lot of 'em). It helped and inspired me to write so many poems and I learned so much from the book and the exercises included.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The subtitle is true!!
    After finishing a writing workshop for poetry I found myself wanting to find a guide to help me continue along the path the class had started for me. After only reading the first 3 chapters I already had started to write four poems, and many more were floating inside my head. This book is amazing in how helpful it is.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great Book
    This book is amazing, it helped me refine my lyric writing so that my subject matter comes across in a much more powerful and profound way. This book is not only for poets but also songwrites and storytellers. I would recomend this book to anyone, that is in to creative writing.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A must have for any writer
    I got this book for a creative writing class, and haven't stopped using it since. I don't consider myself to be a poet, but this book has helped me create several different poems. I recommend it for anyone who wants a good handbook on writing.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Provided the exercises and examples I was looking for.
    I wanted to get a book that got me writing again. Since I've been out of school for years and haven't "had" to do any creative writing, I have gotten out of practice. I was looking for something to start me writing again. This books gives many exercises to try and sample poems as examples. I would strongly recommend this to anyone who wants to write again. ... Read more

    13. The Poetry of Robert Frost : The Collected Poems, Complete and Unabridged
    by Robert Frost
    list price: $37.50
    our price: $23.62
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0805005021
    Catlog: Book (1969-11-15)
    Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
    Sales Rank: 8547
    Average Customer Review: 4.67 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    This is the only comprehensive volume of Robert Frost's published verse; in it are the contents of all eleven of his individual books of poetry-from A Boy's Will (1913) to In the Clearing (1962). The editor, Edward Connery Lathem, has scrupulously annotated the more than 350 poems in this book.
    ... Read more

    Reviews (9)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Poetry for the common man
    What can I say? Robert Frost is the quintessential American poet. Quite frankly, I never have really been drawn to poetry, either it is overly sentimental, too dramatic, or tries to hard to make a statement. Frost avoids all of these pitfalls, he writes poetry for the common man.

    I have to admit, I prefer the earlier works. Beautiful word pictures of an abandoned wood pile in the woods, a dirty patch of snow (or is it a piece of newspaper), and of course, a horse stopping by the woods on a snowy evening. His latter poems lack the beautiful simplicity of his earlier works, but nevertheless, they are still works of the master.

    Over the years, this book has been a constant companion. Sitting in my wingback chair, I have enjoyed reading these poems again and again. As I prepared for this review I was struck how many of these poems dealt with death: The Death of the Hired Man, After Apple Picking, Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening, A Late Walk among them. Others are fanciful such as The Kitchen Chimney.

    If you are considering taking a dive into poetry, start here. There is no better American poet than Robert Frost.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Outstanding
    Such great poems from a great person. One of my favorites.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Amateurish audio production
    This tape is poorly done. The tape quality is bad, and the production is cluttered with music and other background noise. Some of the readings are too fast, and some of the voices aren't very pleasant to listen to. No index is provided, so you have to listen to the tape if you want to know what's on it, and you have no way of knowing who's reading what. This is annoying if you want to read along with the audio.

    If you buy this, buy the audio download instead of the tape. cleaned it up considerably. One nice feature is that if you burn this onto a CD, each poem is on a separate track, as is done with songs on a music CD, except for a few longer pieces that run over to a second track.

    For the record, there are 50 poems in this production. All but 2 of them, "Asking For Roses" and "Spoils Of the Dead," are in the print book by the same title.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Still wonderful after all these years
    I first owned this volume of poetry in 1978. That book simply fell apart after more than 20 years of reading and handling (sometimes roughly by my children). I replace this book with a new one just last year.
    The old favorites are all here; Fireflies in the Garden, The Road Not Taken, Fire and Ice, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, and a hundred more. In my opinion this is the definitive volume on Frost.
    I have always been awed by the number of poems Frost wrote about the stars. A Star on a Stoneboat, The Star Spitter, Stars, Canis Major and many others. Truly Robert Frost is the astronomers poet.
    Also in this volume is perhaps my favorite Frost poem, Brown's Descent.
    If you love reading Frost on a crispy fall evening, then you'll love reading him when the crickets chirp. You'll need to own this book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Poetry-Lover's Definitive Frost
    Robert Frost was and is America's greatest poet. Excepting, perhaps, W. B. Yeats, he may be the greatest poet to write English in the twentieth century. (To me, it's a toss-up.) To read this volume systematically or desultorily is to become convinced of that. But Frost is, above all, accessible, so the casual reader may not appreciate the difficulty of what he does. Like much of the greatest art his looks easy, even inevitable.

    All of Frost's poems are here, plus his two dramatic Masques. When this book first appeared (in 1969) it caused a furor: the editor, it was angrily asserted, presumed too much. He dared to clarify - inserting a hyphen here, excising a comma there. That furor has since died down, as people realize that he did not do away with the sacred texts (any emendation was noted), but simply performed his job as editor. He regularized spelling and the use of single and double quotes (though not Capitalization, which can legitimately be thought of as integral to the poet's expression (think of e.e. cummings!)), and corrected other obvious errors. The notes give the published variants for each poem, so if you wish you may make your own call on some of these finicky issues.

    I cannot emphasize enough: BUY THE HARDCOVER! After all, you will be reading this book for the rest of your life. It is a beautifully-built volume, of an easy size and heft for use, with understated appealing typefaces and an exemplary design. Put out by Frost's long-time publisher, this is one of the few essential books of American literature. ... Read more

    14. Why I Wake Early
    by Mary Oliver
    list price: $22.00
    our price: $15.40
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0807068764
    Catlog: Book (2004-04-15)
    Publisher: Beacon Press
    Sales Rank: 3216
    Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    Mary Oliver has been writing poetry for nearly five decades, and in that time she has become America's foremost poetic voice on our experience of the physical world. This collection presents forty-two new poems, all written within the last two years, wach exhibiting the power and grace that have ceome the hallmarks of Oliver's work.

    This volume includes poems on crickets, toads, trout lillies, bears; on greeting the morning, watching deer, and, finally, on lingering in happiness. Each poem is imbued with the extraordinary perceptions of a poet at the height of her power, considering the everyday in our lives and finding reasons to marvel at all around her.
    ... Read more

    Reviews (1)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Earthy yet sacred, simple yet profound.
    In her 2002 book of poetry, WHAT DO WE KNOW, Pulitzer-Prize winning poet expressed her sense of wonder while listening to a loon at four a. m. (p. 64). In this new collection of 42 poems, she responds to the same question people have been asking me nearly all my life, "why wake up so early?" "It is what I was born for," Oliver explains, "to look, to listen,/ to lose myself/ inside this soft world--/ to instruct myself/ over and over/ in joy,/ and acclamation./ Nor am I talking/ about the exceptional,/ the fearful, the dreadful,/ the very extravagant--/ but of the ordinary,/ the common, the very drab,/ the daily presentations" ("Mindful," pp. 58-9). With a poet's gift of observation and a naturalist's eye for detail, Oliver turns her attention to the morning sun (p. 3), beans (p. 10), an arrowhead "found beside the river" (p. 11), trout lilies (p.12), a green snow cricket (p. 15), a swimming blacksnake (p. 19), clouds (p. 22), a marsh hawk floating in wide circles (p. 31), a flock of snow geese (p. 34), a bear track (p. 41), a luna moth "like a broken leaf" (p. 41), watching deer disappearing "into the impossible trees" (p. 49), "prayers that are made of grass" (p. 59), toads "sweet and alive in the sun" (p. 61), and the pleasures of lingering in happiness after a rain (p. 71) in these poems, always discovering the sacred within the ordinary. Whether she is "the madcap person clapping [her] hands and singing," or "that quiet person down on [her] knees" ("Sometimes," p. 39), readers will experience poetry in WHY I WAKE EARLY that Mary Oliver is best-known for, poetry that is earthy yet sacred, simple yet profound.

    G. Merritt ... Read more

    15. The Song of Hiawatha (Everyman Paperback Classics)
    by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Daniel Aaron
    list price: $6.95
    our price: $6.26
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0460872680
    Catlog: Book (1993-09-01)
    Publisher: Everymans Library
    Sales Rank: 230271
    Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    The Song of Hiawatha (1855) is Longfellow's most popular andmost recognized poem, the epic life and death of a magic American Indian,sent by the Great Spirit to guide the nations in the ways of peace.Hiawatha's marriage to Minnehaha commences a golden age, untilmischievous spirits entice Hiawatha into further adventures. ... Read more

    Reviews (3)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Haiwatha's tale
    An undying tale.. legend... song... Wonderful poetry, the language is simply astounding! I have read the russian translation by Bounin, which was as remarkable as the original.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The language/ rhythm is as mythical and lovely as the plot
    A book for generations. Mine was published 1898 and given me by my mother whose father(b.1875) gave it to her. It goes to the heart of the Indian race, a people susceptible to mythology and magic as their last great hope. Read it with an open mind, imagination, and for its beauty.

    5-0 out of 5 stars This is a great campfire book that really makes you think.
    "The Song of Hiawatha" is the best book I have ever been exposed to. Every time I hear the wonderful rhyme of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, I begin to think of what this land was like before the Europeans conquered it. It is a wonderful tale of peace between nations and a great book to read to children. ... Read more

    16. Blinking with Fists
    by Billy Corgan
    list price: $18.00
    our price: $12.24
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0571211895
    Catlog: Book (2004-10-01)
    Publisher: Faber & Faber
    Sales Rank: 2239
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    Book Description

    the river runs south/thru barrios and ghettoes and starched neighborhood squares
    and everywhere the dogs howl
    I don’t even trust the sound of my own voice here
    my own impermanence haunts me, but this thought alone relieves the pressure
    from the mirror to the gutter, gutter tongued
    my heart speaks to the silence in me
    let me walk alone/home
    as the dead stoplights wave goodnight
    —from "The River Runs Foul"

    Having risen to fame during the grunge era in the early 90s, Billy Corgan is among the most respected figures of the alternative rock world—a visionary artist who, over a decade later, still commands a devoted following.

    Long admired for his evocative songwriting, Corgan here embarks on a deeper exploration of literary terrain as a poet. Full of “the regretful melancholy of his music [and] the rhythmic, angular wordplay of his best Pumpkins lyrics" (Jeff Vrabel, Chicago Sun-Times), the poems in this collection form an imagistic journey through the intensely personal as Corgan throws into sharp relief issues of love, loss, identity, and loyalty. Crafted with a thoughtful and cadenced approach that shares the same allegiance to thunder and quiet found in his music, these writings further solidify Corgan’s place as the voice of a generation.
    ... Read more

    17. Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained (The Signet Classic Poetry Series)
    by John Milton, Christopher B. Ricks
    list price: $7.95
    our price: $7.16
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0451527925
    Catlog: Book (2001-11-01)
    Publisher: Signet Book
    Sales Rank: 10960
    Average Customer Review: 4.88 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    Here in one volume are the complete texts of two of the greatest epic poems in English literature, each a profound exploration of the moral problems of God's justice. They demonstrate Milton's genius for classicism and innovation, narrative and drama-and are a grand example of what Samuel Johnson called his "peculiar power to astonish."

    Edited by Christopher Ricks
    With a New Introduction by Dr. Susanne Woods
    ... Read more

    Reviews (17)

    5-0 out of 5 stars An immense poetic achievement
    Add this reviewer to the list of people who hold Paradise Lost up to the lofty title of The Greatest Epic Poem in the English Language; it is not only this, but one of the best in any language. Writing unabashedly in the tradition of unrhymed Homeric epic verse, Mitlon was working well within what was earlier purveyed by Homer, Virgil, and Dante -- but he brings his own distinctive touch and flair to the work. The opening lines of the long poem are clearly inspired by Homer, as are other elements, but Milton has a very unique poetic style; long sentences, often with the principle verb at the end, being one of its mainstays. This language is very grandiose and quite complex; it takes a while to get used to it -- you will have to pay very close attention during the first book -- but, as with most classical literature, once the reader gets the hang of it, it goes quite smoothly. The Divine Comedy of Dante has a more towring reputation than does Milton's Paradise Lost -- for one thing, it is older -- but I among those who find Milton to be superior. The Divine Comedy is, certainly, an undisputed masterpiece, but, where it was, more or less, a satire and a thinly-veiled attack on many of Dante's political enemies, Milton's work deals with much more complex and profound subject matter: why mankind fell, how the gods themselves operate and think, the nature and attractiveness of evil and sin, the importance of love in human relationships, the moral problems of God's justice. It is true that Dante's work is more original; Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained, at least in seed, come straight from The Bible. But Milton only uses these stories as a springboard for the exploration of the latent moral and ethical problems lurking beneath. Milton explores these problems with a refreshingly fresh perspective -- strictly within the Christian tradition, to be sure, but far from fundamentalist, and even quite radical for its day. Although some cite the work as Christian apologist, there are certainly many elements within the poem that many of the more hard-line Christians would be taken aback by; it was, of course, even more controversial in its day. One thing about the work that often gets pointed out is that Satan is a far more interesting and appealing character than God. This, in my view, does not have Milton unwittingly on the Devil's side, as some critics have suggested. Rather, he is pointing out how appealing sin is always is: of course it's interesting, of course it's appealing -- otherwise, we wouldn't keep falling for it again and again and again. If we saw its razor-sharp fangs and [dripping] mouth, we would have stopped getting ensnared in its trap long ago. However, as a non-Christian myself, I cannot but disagree with some points of Milton's theodicy; the last two books, in particular, and Paradise Regained as a whole, were, for me, quite hard to swallow. I found the more human elements of the poem to be its most intriguing. Milton paints Adam and Eve as quintissentially human characters who possess many of the same feelings that we all share: joy, happiness, fear, sadness, depression, and, most of all, the overriding paramount importance of love. The act of Adam, who was not himself [evil], eating of the apple so that he could follow Eve, no matter what doom was to befall her and them, out of love for her, is still one of the most touching moments in all of literature -- as Mark Twain, in the voice of Adam, later said, "Wheresoever Eve was there, THERE was Eden." God, Satan, and the various angels are also endowed with human characteristics; most Christians today seem to have forgotten that God created Man "in His own image", and that He is not a perfect creature. Likewise, Satan is not entirely evil -- certainly he is ambitious and narcissistic, but so are many humans -- indeed, many have seen him as the hero of the poem (an errorenous view, as I see it.) God often comes off as extremely cold and hardly forgiving or merciful; indeed, to many readers, myself included, this poem doesn't come anywhere near its stated goal of justifying the ways of Gods to men, but only reinforces the views we already had (Mark Twain, whom I have previously mentioned, has a very different view of the situation, closer to my own perspective, that is worth seeking out.) Whatever one's objections to the theology and theodicy expressed within the poem, the poem remains a great work of literature -- poetic, grandiose, profound, extremely readable, and thought-provoking. The shorter sequel, Paradise Regained, is also included in this edition. This work, in my view, comes nowhere near the glory of it's predecessor, but it is still a good read and it is very handy to have it included in this volume as well. For that reason, I highly reccommend picking up this particular edition of the works; also because the introduction, written by Dr. Susanne Woods, is very good, and it has notes provided by the wonderful Christoper Ricks, who also edited the poem for this version. Unlike many editors, he does not include so many notes that they become cumbersome and distract from the text: they are genuinely helpful and there are not too many of them. This is an absolute classic not only of English literature, but of world literature, and a monument in the tradition of epic poetry that you owe it to yourself to read.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Classic work
    Of Man's first disobedience and the fruit
    Of that forbidden tree whose mortal taste
    Brought death into the world and all our woe,
    With loss of Eden, till on greater Man
    Restore us and regain the blissful seat
    Sing, Heavenly Muse...

    Not a lot people know that 'Paradise Lost' has as a much lesser known companion piece 'Paradise Regained'; of course, it was true during Milton's time as it is today that the more harrowing and juicy the story, the better it will likely be remembered and received.

    This is not to cast any aspersion on this great poem, however. It has been called, with some justification, the greatest English epic poem. The line above, the first lines of the first book of the poem, is typical of the style throughout the epic, in vocabulary and syntax, in allusiveness. The word order tends toward the Latinate, with the object coming first and the verb coming after.

    Milton follows many classical examples by personifying characters such as Death, Chaos, Mammon, and Sin. These characters interact with the more traditional Christian characters of Adam, Eve, Satan, various angels, and God. He takes as his basis the basic biblical text of the creation and fall of humanity (thus, 'Paradise Lost'), which has taken such hold in the English-speaking world that many images have attained in the popular mind an almost biblical truth to them (in much the same way that popular images of Hell owe much to Dante's Inferno). The text of Genesis was very much in vogue in the mid-1600s (much as it is today) and Paradise Lost attained an almost instant acclaim.

    John Milton was an English cleric, a protestant who nonetheless had a great affinity for catholic Italy, and this duality of interests shows in much of his creative writing as well as his religious tracts. Milton was nicknamed 'the divorcer' in his early career for writing a pamphlet that supported various civil liberties, including the right to obtain a civil divorce on the grounds of incompatibility, a very unpopular view for the day. Milton held a diplomatic post under the Commonwealth, and wrote defenses of the governments action, including the right of people to depose and dispose of a bad king.

    Paradise Lost has a certain oral-epic quality to it, and for good reason. Milton lost his eyesight in 1652, and thus had to dictate the poem to several different assistants. Though influenced heavily by the likes of Virgil, Homer, and Dante, he differentiated himself in style and substance by concentrating on more humanist elements.

    Say first -- for Heaven hides nothing from thy view,
    Nor the deep tract of Hell -- say first what cause
    Moved our grand Parents, in that happy state,
    Favoured of Heaven so highly, to fall off
    From their Creator and transgress his will,
    For one restraint, lords of the world besides?

    Milton drops us from the beginning into the midst of the action, for the story is well known already, and proceeds during the course of the books (Milton's original had 10, but the traditional epic had 12 books, so some editions broke books VII and X into two books each) to both push the action forward and to give developing background -- how Satan came to be in Hell, after the war in heaven a description that includes perhaps the currently-most-famous line:

    Here we may reign secure, and in my choice
    To reign is worth ambition though in hell:
    Better to reign in hell, that serve in heav'n.

    (Impress your friends by knowing that this comes from Book I, lines 261-263 of Paradise Lost, rather than a Star Trek episode!)

    The imagery of warfare and ambition in the angels, God's wisdom and power and wrath, the very human characterisations of Adam and Eve, and the development beyond Eden make a very compelling story, done with such grace of language that makes this a true classic for the ages. The magnificence of creation, the darkness and empty despair of hell, the manipulativeness of evil and the corruptible innocence of humanity all come through as classic themes. The final books of the epic recount a history of humanity, now sinful, as Paradise has been lost, a history in tune with typical Renaissance renderings, which also, in Milton's religious convictions, will lead to the eventual destruction of this world and a new creation.

    A great work that takes some effort to comprehend, but yields great rewards for those who stay the course.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful view of Heaven and Hell
    I have read alot of classic poetry, and it is great to read one in its native language,which is very beautiful. After reading this I can see, and you will be able to see why this is one of the most well known pieces of literature around. This along with The Divine Comedy (which I recommend) are responsible for many peoples present views of Heaven and Hell.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Way more accessible than I would ever have guessed
    A few days ago I finished Paradise Lost for a book club I'm in. It took me the whole first chapter to get adjusted, but then the book really swept me away. The language is beautiful and the concepts very deep and thoughtful. I can't always agree with Milton's thoedicy, but it definitely provides rich and spicy food for thought. The book requires a lot from the reader, but it's well worth every moment. We also read all 3 books of Dante's Divine Comedy for the book club. I was frequently lost, especially while reading Purgatorio and Paradisio, but Milton is different. You can understand - and enjoy - most of what he says even without the footnotes (though you'll miss 90% of the allusions without them). The poetry is sublime. Like a really great novel, this work hangs over you for days after you finish it, tugging at your heart.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Paradise Lost
    "The poem provides an unwitting expose to the absurdity of Christian mythology." With all due respect, I have to question how someone can consider what Milton intended as the "justification of the ways of God to men" an "unwitting exposé." For sure there are several controversies throughout PL-Milton most certainly DOES represent Satan as noble, rationalize the Fall, and present God as less interesting and engaging than the Devil-but he most certainly does NOT do so "unwittingly." Above all Milton was an advocate of freedom-freedom of thought and theology no less than the freedom from censorship he championed in Areopagitica. He was in many ways unorthodox, even denying the Holy Spirit as a person of the Trinity. In Paradise Lost, Milton was not writing a treatise on God's justice and unwittingly undermining his own religion: the issues of Satan's heroic charm and God's apparent coldness are fundamental parts of that treatise. Sin is tempting and attractive, but "the wages of sin is death" (as shown by the "Unholy Trinity" of Satan, Sin, and Death, by which point in the narrative the heroic appeal of Satan the reader may have felt at the beginning of the poem starts to fade). And the cold, often unappealing reason and justice of God are hard to come to terms with-indeed, impossible to come to terms with, without the redemption of Christ. Milton hardly tries to "negate his own words with addendums and disclaimers." Show me one such addendum or disclaimer that isn't part of his intended theodicy. In my opinion, Milton's epic is one of the most cogent examples of Christian apologetics ever. Did you miss the line that "with reiterated crimes [Satan] heaps on himself damnation, while he sought evil to others, and enrag'd might see how all his malice serv'd but to bring forth infinite goodness, grace and mercy, but on himself treble confusion, wrath and vengeance pour'd." Also, I suggest reconsidering the significance of his statement that "Virtue is but choosing"-a brief statement which alone can "justify the ways of God to men," even without the hopeful ending and the redemptive fulfillment in Paradise Regained. Virtue, defined here as the choice to serve God, would not be possible had not man and woman been given free will; and maybe, just maybe, the horror of hell and Satan, the woes of man (and even the death of Christ) were worth the price of making possible the concept of love.

    For all that, I do agree that "Paradise Lost features some of the most wonderful passages written in the English language." But I can see how you might think Milton was writing an exposé, intentional or not, if you only read (or only paid attention to?) those first hundred pages about the rebellious angels. (If you ask me, though, the description of Eden, the ironic pursuits of the demons and the perverted parallels of Hell to Heaven, and all of Book IX are the highlights). However, debate is good. I'm sure we both agree with Milton that the freedom to express one's beliefs is of paramount importance. That said, I believe that PL is indeed an exposé, in part at least-not of Christianity, but of the irony and vanity of evil. His arguments for the justice of God seem valid to me, and (is it just me?) his description of Satan as a hero, of Satan's self-righteous volunteering to leave hell, and of the horrible perversion of the" Unholy Trinity", serve not to justify Satan and thereby justify rebellion, but instead, to expose evil for what it is-tempting, but horrific. The most I personally can feel for Satan is pity, and by the end of Paradise Lost, that pity has turned almost entirely to enmity. As a whole, although Paradise Lost certainly raises some debatable issues, it accomplishes what Milton set out to do-justify the ways of God to men. ... Read more

    18. Where Shall I Wander : New Poems
    by John Ashbery
    list price: $22.95
    our price: $15.61
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0060765291
    Catlog: Book (2005-03-01)
    Publisher: Ecco
    Sales Rank: 124554
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    19. Small Wonder : Essays
    by Barbara Kingsolver
    list price: $13.95
    our price: $10.46
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0060504080
    Catlog: Book (2003-04-01)
    Publisher: Perennial
    Sales Rank: 3751
    Average Customer Review: 3.79 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    In her new essay collection, the beloved author of High Tide in Tucson brings to us, out of one of history's darker moments, an extended love song to the world we still have.

    Whether she is contemplating the Grand Canyon, her vegetable garden, motherhood, genetic engineering, or the future of a nation founded on the best of all human impulses, these essays are grounded in the author's belief that our largest problems have grown from the earth's remotest corners as well as our own backyards, and that answers may lie in both those places.

    Sometimes grave, occasionally hilarious, and ultimately persuasive, Small Wonder is a hopeful examination of the people we seem to be, and what we might yet make of ourselves.

    ... Read more

    Reviews (67)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Somewhat lackluster for such a brilliant author
    I was eager to read _Small Wonder_ after immensely enjoying Kingsolver's previous book of essays, _High Tide in Tucson_, as well as just about everything else she's written. I was disappointed to find it much less engaging. Kingsolver generally uses a very deft approach to moral ambiguities, presenting the reader with the issues and then for the most part leaving us to draw our own conclusions. In this book, however, I felt I was being beaten over the head with her ideology. Never mind that I agree with her on most points; I still didn't appreciate having her opinions stuffed down my throat. It may be that our country's current dismal outlook on the political and environmental scenes are causing her to become more angry and shrill. If so, this seems like a better way to turn readers off than on. If she weren't one of my favorite writers, I would probably have given this 2 stars rather than 3.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Beautifully Written Sanity
    Since the Twin Towers crumbled, very few have had the courage to stand up in the face of the Jingoistic, shallow patriotism and say, there is something terribly wrong here! Ms. Kingsolver, writing beautifully as always, manages to make hard fisted moral statements sound like poetry, but nonetheless she says some things that need to be said, and, most of all, need to be heard.Whether it is debunking the nonsense that it is wrong for other countries to attack the US, but fair and just for the US to attack them back, or telling the truth out loud about the US involvement in setting up the Taliban's power in the first place, she tells it truly from her heart, and she tells it right and well. She addresses many topics in this wonderful book of essays, from the death penalty to poetry, to dreadful television, and she manages each time to stand outside of the mainstream point of view and look objectively, and from that stance, to point out the absurdity, and to point out a saner direction. Ms. Kingsolver says peace not war, love not hate, sharing not profit, and these ideas are not new, just stated newly and beautifully at a time when they need so desparately to be heard.
    This was a wonderful book and I wish everyone would read it and let it in.

    2-0 out of 5 stars A Not-So-Tasty Organic Stew
    Barbara Kingsolver is an excellent writer and I have no trouble with anyone espousing her political views. It is her right as it is anyone else's. I admire her courage of conviction and many of the practices in her life. That said, however, I did find it a little hard to swallow the not-so-subtle lectures from an environmentalist who writes books that kill trees, lives in Tucson (aren't the organic gardens she writes of so glowingly all irrigated? How is that such a resource savings?), maintains two homes, jets around the world, and lives the way she chooses, not the way she has to. But then, I have always been a big fan of ironies.

    Another irony that struck me was the unpleasant whiff of commercialism in packaging a collection of essays that seemed to capitalize on the events of 9-11 from someone who writes so eloquently about the soul-destroying aspects of rampant commercialism. While her writing is always a pleasure, her views seemed a tad simplistic at times. The 9-11 attacks were caused by global warming and multinational corporations -- nothing about US policies in the Middle East, religious fanaticism, and bad foreign policy in general. Homelessness can be solved by seeing that everyone has a home. (Having worked with several homeless people, I can testify that the solutions are just a tad more complicated than that.)

    I was genuinely confused by her views on trade. If I buy food even from other parts of the United States is that a Bad Thing or a Good Thing? She points out that much of our food travels a long way to get to us -- conveniently ignoring the fact that people have sought goods from other lands for millenia -- but justifies her coffee because it is shade grown; I guess that cancels out the distance it is transported and the middlemen who also profit. And she rightly criticizes the big corporations who profit by using others and destroying land, but has nothing to say about the poor people in other lands who are using their little bit of commerce to feed their families.

    She describes an encounter with several teachers who were nervous and afraid to come to work the day after the Columbine shootings. She is able to calm these silly gooses by pointing out that they are no more likely to die than any other day. But she herself is upset at 9-11, even though she doesn't live anywhere near the attacks, lost no one, and has no television. It just seems as though her feelings are genuine but others are shallow.

    A final, personal quibble: I'd love to read something from a Southerner who doesn't have to point out that They Have Standards. I suppose that her comment about not being able to have company without doing some tidying because she is a Southerner was meant to be a little self-deprecatory humor, but the implication from her and others who keep doing this is that Other Folks are comfortable just sitting around in their underwear and throwing more trash onto the carpet. Believe it or not, other folks tidy up and invite people to dinner, can you imagine?

    2-0 out of 5 stars A Not-So-Tasty Organic Stew
    I have no problem with Barbara Kingsolver stating her political views, although I was surprised to discover that this is basically what these essays are. I admire the courage of her convictions and am happy to learn ways in which I might think of slower, kinder, more gentle times.

    That said, however, some of this was kind of hard to swallow from a woman who maintains two homes, jets all over the world, and gardens because she chooses to, not because she has to. I have a major philosophical disconnect with an environmentalist who writes books that kill trees and who lives in Tucson, where surely they must have to irrigate to do all this local gardening, but I am a big fan of ironies. I also have a hard time accepting a series of essays that seems to capitalize on the events on 9-11 in a personal way. In one of her essays, Kingsolver describes how she calmed a number of teachers who, silly geese, were nervous at coming to work the day after the Columbine shootings. She points out how they are no more likely to die than any other day and they are comforted. Isn't it special that she was there to do that? Yet she writes several times about how *deeply* the events of 9-11 affected her, even though she doesn't live anywhere near the affected areas, lost no one, and has no television. Why are her feelings so profound while others are so shallow? A lot of her essays seem to focus on ways in which she shuts herself off from negative feelings and images (I happen to agree with her about television, and about a number of other issues), but then she chooses to inject herself into 9-11 and become one of us, so to speak. There's a nasty whiff of commercialism about this book, again ironic in a collection that speaks so eloquently about the soul-destroying aspects of rampant consumerism.

    I also found myself genuinely confused about her food and trade issues. If I buy food from other parts of the world, is that a Good Thing or a Bad Thing? If I support the multinational corporations, it's a Bad Thing, but may I still have my oatmeal from Ireland and my olive oil from Italy? Is that trade in a humane way, or just another American buying things she doesn't need? I really don't know. She points out that a lot of food travels great distances to reach us, but people have always sought goods and food from other lands. In a non-hostile manner, it strikes me as one of the ways we learn to respect each other's differences, but Kingsolver really doesn't delve into this. She does speak out against the overbearing tendencies of the big corporations, and I agree with her, but she never gets into the cottage industries in Third World countries that may be selling goods to support their families.

    Speaking of big corporations -- and I am in a spoiler mood today -- the main reason the United States was attacked, according to her, was global warming. If she mentions global warming once, she does it a dozen times. Well, global warming *is* a serious problem, but maybe our policies in the Middle East, religious fanaticism, and bad foreign policy in general just might have had a little to do with it, but what do I know?

    And a final, personal quibble: is it not possible for a Southern woman to refrain from interjecting comments about doing things certain ways because she's a Southerner? She mentions that she's from the South and therefore is just not capable of greeting visitors without doing a little tidying. I suppose that's meant to be a little self-deprecating humor, but really, it's hostile and rude. The clear implication is that *other* folks just lie there in their underwear flinging trash onto the rug. Surprise, Barbara: people who are not special enough to be Southerners actually pick up their living rooms and invite people to dinner. This is not some special Southern thing, even if that's what you were taught.

    3-0 out of 5 stars It was Good and it was Bad...
    I read an interesting essay in this book about a wild Bear that had nursed a child in a remote cave in a mountainous area in Iran.

    I find it unfortunate that Ms. Kingsolver (and also the Editors), do not understand that the language of Iran is not "Arabic"... It was humorous that Ms. Kingsolver says that inspite of her efforts, she was not able to determine the fate of the bear because she "can't read arabic".

    Furthermore there is no such thing as "Lorena" province in Iran -- likely it is "Lorestan" that is being referred to here (again, indicative of poor editing) - There have been many derivative articles that have now propagated the errors in this essay.

    While I agree with the spirit of her essay , I find it unfortunate that seemingly educated people use their ignorance to spread falsehoods and streotypes such as suggesting that the Lori's might have ultimately killed the bear. In any case, I read an article on this incident, written by The Herald, which indicated that the bear was left alone and not "killed" by the Lori's, for taking a human child as its own. The Lori's are a nature-loving people that have co-existed with their natural surroundings for centuries.

    In any case the official language of Iran is Persian (Parsi), which is of Indo-Iranian roots, unlike arabic which is Semetic. I thought this was fairly well known. I would appreciate it if this essay and its author and editors are corrected. ... Read more

    20. Leaves of Grass (Bantam Classics)
    list price: $5.95
    our price: $5.36
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0553211161
    Catlog: Book (1983-07-01)
    Publisher: Bantam Classics
    Sales Rank: 23674
    Average Customer Review: 4.34 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    Described by Emily Dickinson as "disgraceful" and by Emerson as "the most extraordinary piece of wit and wisdom that America had yet contributed" to world literature, Leaves of Grass is more than a literary performance.In his departure from the rules of conventional poetry, his breaking down of the metered line, and his discarding of the obligatory rhyme-scheme, Whitman captures the vigorous spirit of the whole American nation.This edition reproduces the 1891-2 text and includes Whitman's preface to the 1855 edition, as well as Emerson's famous letter of 1855, greeting Whitman "at the beginning of a great career." ... Read more

    Reviews (47)

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Greatest American Poet's Masterpiece.
    Giving Walt Whitman only five stars out of five does him an injustice. Walt Whitman is perhaps the finest American poet ever as well as the most quintessentially American poet. His poetry never dates itself. It is as contemporary as if he just wrote it last week. Walt Whitman's poems overflow with life and energy, pulsate with excitement, and contain deep though simply-told truths that rival those of any wise man in history. Much maligned during life and after for the eroticism of his writing, he never let his inhibitions hold back his writing and thus it sparkles with honesty. Walt Whitman was also a great patriot, who loved America in a way modern Americans would do well to emulate. He sought it out on its own terms and recorded what he saw in his poetry. His war poems, written during the American Civil War, are some of the best war poems existing in literature. Whitman knew his subject, having spent much time caring for the wounded soldiers in the hospitals and visiting battlefields. His poems create vivid pictures, richly textured, as real as you read them as if you were seeing the scene yourself. And the dialog he carries on with the reader makes the reader feel that Whitman, if he were still alive, would like nothing more than to sit down and discuss life. He is one of the few poets who manages to establish a rapport with his reader, to anticipate his reader's reactions and talk to each one through the poem. Walt Whitman should be read by any and every literate American. 'Leaves of Grass' will change anyone who dares to read it.

    4-0 out of 5 stars The True American Patriot
    After reading a portion of Walt Whitman's "Leaves of Grass", particularly the preface and "Song of Myself", I found it to be inspiring and uplifting. Whitman is the most enthuiastic American poet I have ever read and his passion for life and nature is amazing. He did not ever want to miss a second of life or the smallest detail of nature. He shares his limitless love for all Americans, including, of course, himself. I particularly enjoy his frequent usage of listing without commas, which I find livens his excitement for life even more. Whitman, although he may come off as a bit over eager to some, truly makes you realize how blessed you are and how lucky you are to live in this beautiful place, and he reminds us all that we should not take any of these blessings for granted. Something I find I need to be reminded of more than I should. I recommend this book to all.

    5-0 out of 5 stars a classic of American poetry
    No doubt influenced by the free verse of ancient Greek poetry, Walt Whitman wrote about 19th c. America in the same way that the ancient Greek and Roman poets wrote about their own time and world. Much praised and criticized when it was first published, "Leaves of Grass" remains a wonderfully innovative, original, observant, wise, sensually unashamed, and heroic portrait of American identity, and a eulogy in praise of American people, places, ideas and things.

    David Rehak
    author of "Poems From My Bleeding Heart"

    5-0 out of 5 stars Outstanding Poems here
    This is one of the first books of poetry that I ever read. My Great Grand Father had this book, and it was very old looking to me when I first seen it 25 years ago, I was young then and didn't know that the book held a value. I don't know where it is now but I know the poems were really good and I enjoyed them immensely. Walt Whitman is a great writer, and I enjoy is poems.

    3-0 out of 5 stars the American's American
    Several reviewers state that Whitman is a "real American." Fair enough. But when his "bravado and self-love" are defended in the name of some sort of humility then someone is projecting their own romantic reading onto a person who was a self-proclaimed imperialist. He was hardly someone who wanted everyone to find their own truth. Of course, in today's post-9/11 America, being an imperialist certainly makes Whitman seem like a contemporary American. ... Read more

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