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1. The Wild Braid: A Poet Reflects
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2. 2005 Poets Market (Poet's Market)
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3. Writing Poems, Sixth Edition
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4. Three Genres: The Writing of Poetry,
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5. The Practice of Poetry : Writing
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6. In the Palm of Your Hand:The Poet's
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7. Legal Writing in Plain English:
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8. Poetry Matters: Writing a Poem
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9. Poemcrazy : Freeing Your Life
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10. The Power of Poems: Teaching the
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11. Beyond Roses Are Red, Violets
12. Poetic Meter and Poetic Form
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13. Opening The Invitation : The Poem
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14. Discovery of Poetry
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15. When I Was Cool : My Life at the
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16. Kiss of God - The Wisdom of a
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17. Celebrate Through Heartsongs
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18. The Place My Words Are Looking
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19. The Book of Forms: A Handbook
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20. 3 x 33 : Short Fiction by 33 Writers

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

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

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

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

2. 2005 Poets Market (Poet's Market)
by Nancy Breen, Erika Kruse
list price: $24.99
our price: $16.49
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Asin: 1582972753
Catlog: Book (2004-07-07)
Publisher: Writers Digest Books
Sales Rank: 11537
Average Customer Review: 4.47 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

The "how, who, where, and when" resource for poets of all skill levels, 2005 Poet's Market is a poet's complete guide to getting published. This edition provides:

*Publishing opportunities for aspiring and established poets alike, from magazines, small presses, and competitions, to state and provincial grants

*Advice and inspiration from prominent poets, including Nikki Giovanni, Jared Carter, Marie Jordan, and more

*Helpful indexes categorized by book and chapbook publishers, openness to submissions, geography, and subject

*Ideas for self-promotion, information on publishing scams, and other valuable marketing advice

For poets, this guide provides all the direction they need to get their poetry in print. ... Read more

Reviews (19)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Poet's Bible
This book is a MUST READ for poets interested in publishing their work. The interviews with seasoned poets, editors and publishers are very insightful, and the publication listings provide useful information for poets who want to know if their works would be a good match for a particular journal. I have had success getting published in several of the markets I found in this book.

The one down side to Poet's Market is the same down side to any directory or reference book -- as soon as it goes to print, it's out of date. With the constant flux of journals launching and closing their mailboxes, it's impossible for any edition of the Poet's Market to be 100% perfect. However, it's the best guide out there, and definitely needs to be in the library of every poet.

4-0 out of 5 stars Pain-in-the-neck tome remains essential to writers, dreamers
When the editors of this reference say to examine a copy of the periodical before submitting, they are not trying to pump up circulation -- they are trying to save everyone some time and energy. But now, instead of sending ten bucks here and ten bucks there and then waiting 1 - 6 months for an issue to arrive, you can use the listed web site to size up your target before you submit. Some periodicals sound good until you look closer and discover that the web site includes a photo of the editors drinking beer.
More isn't always better. Apparently there are as many people who want to be poetry editors as there are people who want to be poets. This means plenty of periodicals fold, and you can avoid wasting postage by keeping the latest edition of this handy.
This is a book best purchased by those unfortunate enough to write poetry out of desperate drive, as opposed to those who actually want to be a poet. Nobody wants to be a poet, it just happens. You don't see publishers hiring people right out of creative writing programs. Be able to name five poets you really like and why before you strut your dabbling by leaving this volume out on your coffee table.
Sales should be restricted to people who have never donned a beret, even in jest.

5-0 out of 5 stars She Killed Me
If I arrive or not, that's not important
I went in between all thy passion
I went there waiting for your eyes
They sow me, anyway
They never to me arrived
Thou choose the faces and
Thou brake thy other skins
That inside thy beauty
Thy don't want to feel

She killed myself
She killed thy life that I had
Very deep in my skin.
She didn't choose my face
She killed me with her indifference
Thy city of lights, that thus call
That you love for be proud
She killed my lust
And with it my strangers died too.

Is for I lost already
These power that I use to carry
Like a cross
Is maybe for I am not enough
For a place that live in lights,
She knew that I come from the darkness
In thy city of lights I could never
Go inside.

" I am bleeding
she is drinking it
but without her company
the dead would be worst"

5-0 out of 5 stars Exellence in Reference
As a published writer, Poet's Market is a tremendous source of information -- from sample cover and query letters to interviews with editors, this book is essential for all poets and writers. I have found that it is important to purchase each new edition in order to remain current and that's what this book does. It lists every type of magazine that publishes poetry, chapbook and full-length book contests and publisher information, etc. It's the best writing reference book out there.

3-0 out of 5 stars Needs better indexing
This book needs to be indexed by:

* lead time for response
* months during which publisher reads
* compensation
* other standard bits that are included in each entry ... Read more

3. Writing Poems, Sixth Edition
by Michelle Boisseau, Robert Wallace
list price: $63.40
our price: $63.40
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Asin: 0321094239
Catlog: Book (2003-07-18)
Publisher: Longman
Sales Rank: 135476
Average Customer Review: 4.17 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

This book offers comprehensive coverage of the creative process and the technical aspects of writing poetry.Filled with practical advice and numerous examples, Writing Poems is appropriate for both the beginning and advanced poet.Its anthology of classic and contemporary poems enlivens its readers' understanding of poetry, illustrates poetic principles, and, above all, inspires writing.With clear explanations, a lively presentation, and in-depth discussions, this book demystifies the process of writing poems and provides the guidance needed to help writers improve their craft. For anyone interested in writing poetry ... Read more

Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars Powerful Creative Writing Text for Poets
WRITING POEMS by Michelle Boisseau and Robert Wallace, 6th ed., offers clear advice, appropriate examples, and stimulating suggestions for creating poems. I recommend this text to advanced poetry students who have had at least one semester of creative writing. R. S. Gwynn's Poetry: A Harper Collins Pocket Anthology would complement this text in a junior-level college poetry writing course.

5-0 out of 5 stars If you want to read a text on writing poetry, this is it
I took an advanced poetry course from Michelle Boiseeau who taught from this text. She was enlightening, helpful, and inspiring. The book was more so.

I re-read the book after taking the course and found it even more helpful in reflecting on the course.

Michelle Boisseau is one of our most talented and hard-working poets. Her approach is as clearly revealed in this book as any poet could hope to impart.

Don't read this book expecting to come out a poet, but read this book and plan on learning a great deal about the process of writing poetry.

4-0 out of 5 stars Seek an earlier edition
I have a previous edition of this book which I've really enjoyed, but something seems to have washed out of this current offering. The book is dedicated to Robert Wallace, who died during the compilation of edition #4, and I'm wondering if the book didn't go to press in a daze. This edition seems slicker, perkier, and less succinct than it's siblings. Still useful and nutritious but in that low-salt, high-fiber way that I don't want my poems or books about poems to have. My suggestion is to try an earlier edition.

In my daydreams, every poet has read this book (edition #2 I can vouch for), as well as the books "Western Wind" and "In the Palm of Your Hand" and gorgeous, flexing poems are lying about everywhere. It could happen.

1-0 out of 5 stars Do Not Buy This Book If You Want To Be A Poet
This is the WORST textbook I have ever read, from its simple- and literal- minded deconstructions of great poems soiled by the dim illuminations of them, to its muddled explanations of prosody and poetics. There are far better books out there for the aspiring poet. Try "Writing Poetry" by Barbara Drake; "The Art of Poetry Writing" and "The Poet's Dictionary" by William Packard; "The Book of Forms" by Lewis Turco; "Thirteen Ways Of Looking For A Poem" by Wendy Bishop; and before all these others you must read "Letters To A Young Poet" by Rilke (translated by Herter Norton).

5-0 out of 5 stars This book is like an MFA program in poetry in 410 pages.
I have taught this book in its various editions in the Writers' Program at UCLA for many years. It is simply the best textbook I have ever found to demystify poetry and inspire would-be poets. Not only is the text clear, cogent and lively, but the examples of poetry used -- from Sharon Olds' "Sex Without Love" and Norman Dubie's "A Blue Hog", to Yusef Komunyakaa's "Sunday Afternoons" and Richard Wilbur's "Love Calls Us to the Things of the World" (plus classics such as W.C. Williams' "The Red Wheelbarrow" and Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken") -- are uniformly first rate. If you want to learn how to write poetry well and do not live near an urban writing center, you can do no better than to buy this book. ... Read more

4. Three Genres: The Writing of Poetry, Fiction, and Drama (7th Edition)
by Stephen Minot
list price: $58.80
our price: $58.80
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Asin: 0130420999
Catlog: Book (2002-06-19)
Publisher: Prentice Hall
Sales Rank: 364074
Average Customer Review: 3.25 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Resourc
Three Genres is an excellent resource for beginning to intermediate creative writing students. It gives them the terminology they need to discuss written works and also includes many excellent examples in each genre. The book also includes some writing exercises, but the book is more of a scholarly resource. I've used it in my creative writing classes at the college level, and I haven't had the problems that other users describe regarding the "Don't do" lists. I rather like those. They help students avoid some of the pitfalls of beginning writers.

1-0 out of 5 stars Terrible resource
This book is very limited in its helpfulness. The title is very misleading, because Minot only knows what he's talking about in one of them. He should not even have attempted to touch drama. I wonder if he's ever even seen a play, as his attempts to instruct are completely off. Minot also focuses heavily on "don't do" lists rather than the instruction of helpful insight. In three words: the book blows.

2-0 out of 5 stars For this market, try another book
I had fond memories of this book from years ago, so I used it for my creative writing class. I was surprised, upon revisiting it, to find out how little it offers in the way of actual terminology, which is pretty important information when you want to talk about parts of poems or parts of fiction. If the parts don't have names, it's hard to have specific conversations about pieces of writing. Also, I and my class were turned off by the long lists of what NOT to do. My students found this to be somewhat patronizing and definitely an introduction to writer's block as that list of negatives rang its little list of 'not' in their ears. Further, Minot places a lot of emphasis on writing about family and the relationships therein. Most writers know that relying on the familiar is not always a good idea, as it can result in the trite, the sentimental, or the overly dramatic. It takes a long time to learn how to control the elements of the familiar to make it "fiction" that can be talked about with others, so this does not seem a good approach for beginning writers. Minot does not seem to like writing as an exploration of writing. He seems to favor it more as a means of exploring personal relationships. He does present many good ideas in the book, but they are good in the way that most obvious information is good--great to have, but irritating to receive.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Very Good Book
This book, which focuses on writing with subtlety and finesse, succeeds not only in discussing writing techniques but through careful study of poems, plays, and short stories, conveys reading techniques as well. Although the best, and really the only way to learn to write well is through practice, I highly suggest Three Genres to anyone who enjoys writing. ... Read more

5. The Practice of Poetry : Writing Exercises From Poets Who Teach
by Robin Behn
list price: $16.00
our price: $10.88
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Asin: 006273024X
Catlog: Book (1992-09-23)
Publisher: HarperResource
Sales Rank: 13546
Average Customer Review: 4.55 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

A distinctive collection of more than 90 effective poetry-writing exercises combined with corresponding essays to inspire writers of all levels. ... Read more

Reviews (11)

3-0 out of 5 stars Not quite what I was looking for.
I found this book more difficult to follow in my attempt to do creative writing on my own. I felt it lacked enough example poems. The exercises were inconsistent, as they seemed to come from some very different teaching styles. Many of the exercises just seemed so goofy that I didn't even bother with them. I would much more strongly recommend "In the Palm of Your Hand" for the same purpose.

5-0 out of 5 stars A cornucopia of exercises from poets we read and respect
This book is a must-read for any poet, regardless of skill. It has exercises ranging from terribly technical to wildly free formed. They are fun, sometimes even silly, and lead the reader into mental places they might never have thought to go. The results of the exercises always suprise the reader, and I would say that if a poem doesn't suprise it's writer, nothing has been learned. I recommended this book to a freshman poetry class and they all did many, many exercises on their own time. (Not a small feat for time-pressed college students!) Overall, I rank this book right up there with other indispensible books for poets such as Writing Down The Bones by Natalie Goldberg and Letters to a Young Poet from Rilke. Read this book, but don't just read it--live in it, sip from it, allow it to lead you where you may not know you need to go. You will be better for it, both in your writing and in your spirit.

4-0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully Helpful....................
.....................Behn and Twichell bring us literally dozens of writing exercises from established poets like Maxine Kumin, Rita Dove, Donald Justice and many more. The chapters in the book are separated according to the poetry writing skill they are designed to sharpen. There are chapters on image and metaphor, self and subject, topic, structure, sound and rhythm, and on revision and writer's block. After each exercise is a thorough explanation of how the exercise is supposed to help the poet, often illustrated by the author's own personal experience. Additionally, some exercises are followed up with the titles (but not the actual poems) of recommended poems that should illustrate to the novice poet an excellent example particular poetic elements in action. Personally, I feel my poetry has been helped a great deal by the exercises that I've used in this book. I'm a beginner and I've come to see how choosing the right word is so critical, learned how to gain a different perspective, started to hear the "music" of poetry better, and I've begun to really see how critical strict revisioning is. I highly recommend this book to all novice poets!

5-0 out of 5 stars Don't miss this book!
I taught from this book and continue to use it year after year in my own writing.

It's indispensable!

4-0 out of 5 stars Helpful to teachers--essential for those who love to write
As a teacher of poetry writing, I am always looking for books that include exercises and inspiring starters that will help the young and or inexperienced writer. I bought this book for that purpose, but what I found myself doing was bringing the book home week after week so that I could experience the activities personally.

Writing is an incredibly personal activity that isolates one from others. This book brings writers together collectively to that lone writer and helps her to know she is not alone, and it helps that writer to try some new ways of tapping that well of creativity...even when the supply is running low.

There are a lot of books out there on writing poetry, but few are as inspiring and helpful as Ms. Behn's. It is a must have for every poet, teacher, and lover of poetry. ... Read more

6. In the Palm of Your Hand:The Poet's Portable Workshop
by Steve Kowit
list price: $14.95
our price: $10.17
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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

7. Legal Writing in Plain English: A Text With Exercises
by Bryan A. Garner
list price: $16.00
our price: $10.88
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Asin: 0226284182
Catlog: Book (2001-06-05)
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Sales Rank: 18810
Average Customer Review: 4.64 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Admirably clear, concise, down-to-earth, and powerful-unfortunately, these adjectives rarely describe legal writing, whether in the form of briefs, opinions, contracts, or statutes. In Legal Writing in Plain English, Bryan A. Garner provides lawyers, judges, paralegals, law students, and legal scholars sound advice and practical tools for improving their written work. The book encourages legal writers to challenge conventions and offers valuable insights into the writing process: how to organize ideas, create and refine prose, and improve editing skills. In essence, it teaches straight thinking--a skill inseparable from good writing.

Replete with common sense and wit, the book draws on real-life writing samples that Garner has gathered through more than a decade of teaching in the field. Trenchant advice covers all types of legal materials, from analytical and persuasive writing to legal drafting. Meanwhile, Garner explores important aspects of document design. Basic, intermediate, and advanced exercises in each section reinforce the book's principles. (An answer key to basic exercises is included in the book; answers to intermediate and advanced exercises are provided in a separate Instructor's Manual, free of charge to instructors.) Appendixes include a comprehensive punctuation guide with advice and examples, and four model documents.

Today more than ever before, legal professionals cannot afford to ignore the trend toward clear language shorn of jargon. Clients demand it, and courts reward it. Despite the age-old tradition of poor writing in law, Legal Writing in Plain English shows how legal writers can unshackle themselves.

Legal Writing in Plain English includes:

*Tips on generating thoughts, organizing them, and creating outlines.
*Sound advice on expressing your ideas clearly and powerfully.
*Dozens of real-life writing examples to illustrate writing problems and solutions.
*Exercises to reinforce principles of good writing (also available on the Internet).
*Helpful guidance on page layout.
*A punctuation guide that shows the correct uses of every punctuation mark.
*Model legal documents that demonstrate the power of plain English.

... Read more

Reviews (11)

5-0 out of 5 stars Attorneys can't write well without this book!
Quit searching -- this is the best book on legal writing that you will find. It is outstanding.

I am an attorney in Texas, and I have attended two of Mr. Garner's legal-writing seminars. He is currently the leading authority on legal writing; he is also an engaging speaker. His approach is to eliminate legalese and to present a powerful and succinct message. This approach has a very practical foundation -- over the years, Mr. Garner has polled judges across the country to see which writing elements they prefer.

This volume distills Mr. Garner's findings into a compact, 227-page format. The book also contains model documents -- a research memorandum, a legal motion, an appellate brief, and a business contract -- which serve as excellent reference tools for the legal practitioner.

Put simply, if you don't subscribe to Mr. Garner's advice, you don't know how to write well. And this book is the best way yet to access to Mr. Garner's valuable insight. This book is an ESSENTIAL reference tool.

5-0 out of 5 stars An Enlighten Reformer Improving Writing For All!
Bryan Garner is a beacon of light in a profession over wrought in using formal vain communications. I was able to review this book at a Writing Seminar led by the author. He is reforming the way all people should communicate and his lectures are sincerely admirable.

The author teaches a, "Can Do Style," of encouragement. I came away concluding the old method of learning by rote is failing. English Teachers are excellent in explaining the rules of good grammar. But terrible on coaching children in applying the rules for skillful writing. I am not concluding all English Teachers deserve blame here. Teachers simply restate how they learn grammar

Likewise, ideal teaching avoids faultfinding personal attacks as much as possible. Human nature prompts one to avoid parents or teachers or practicing embarrassment is the road to success. Instead, the author urges that all writing should make the reader feel smart.

The legal profession is a victim of what they read. The most insecure judges, lawyers and law clerks often wrote to display their education. Today, the best lawyer will use plain English to convince others of the merits to his argument. Success and confidence draw near by making anyone feel they are smart because they accept you. Using large words makes one think about the words they do not know above your alluring reasoning.

Bryan Garner's primers along with practicing his techniques will change you into a stronger writer, lawyer and person. You will not regret spending the money on Bryan Garner's books and seminars. The goal is to make everyone feel smarter by reading what you write! What better way to change the world by touching people with your thoughts to words to deeds!

5-0 out of 5 stars Plain English is Shorter, More Precise.
The problem with the 1-star review is that it has the problem completely reversed. The reviewer suggests that traditional legal drafting is *shorter* than the plain english drafting that Garner proposes. He need only read Garner's books to learn that traditional drafting is *significantly* longer and more difficult to read than plain English.

Furthermore, the reviewer needs to realize that Garner is not advocating that all legal writing be poetry. First and foremost, he advocates for clarity and precision. If the writer can also make it interesting to read (or even a joy to read), then more power to the writer.

If you're a lawyer and hate seeing "WHEREAS" before each recital and prefer a simple sentence, Garner is the man for you.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Great Garner Strikes Another Blow for Good Prose
Bryan A. Garner is leading what might be a Quixotic charge to make lawyers write clear, clean, unambiguous and even interesting prose. This book is a recent addition to the Garner arsenal, which includes the excellent The Winning Brief and A Dictionary of Modern Legal Usage. The anonymous writer from New York who slams Garner is wrong. He claims that traditional legal drafting has stood the test of time and is readily understood by judges, who ultimately have to interpret it. If the writing were clear to begin with, the parties wouldn't get to a judge. They'd likely settle. And that writer ignores the fact that there are thousands, perhaps millions, of legal decisions over contract disputes, almost all arising from documents that were "traditionally drafted." And different judges can decide differently about the meaning of a clause. That writer askes rhetorically whether Garner would insist that mathematicians use prose to make their work clear to laypeople. The rhetoric ignores the fact that mathematics is its own language. Legal writing is written in English, the same English used to buy groceries, talk lovingly to your spouse, and complain to the doctor about what ails you. There is no valid reason a contract should be beyond the comprehension of a layperson, other than lawyers' need to feel like they're elevated professionals with a grip on arcana. And the writer's praise of "Notwithstanding anything to the contrary" as an incantatory phrase in contracts overlooks an obvious improvement: "DESPITE anything in this agreement to the contrary . . . ." Garner is a brilliant, insightful teacher who cares deeply about the language and its highest and best use. We know what happens with legalese: litigation and contention and noncomprehension. Give plain English a try, with Garner as your guide to Aquinas's trinity of wholeness, harmony, radiance, and of course clarity clarity clarity.

5-0 out of 5 stars EXCELLENT

8. Poetry Matters: Writing a Poem from the Inside Out
by Ralph Fletcher
list price: $4.99
our price: $4.99
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Asin: 0380797038
Catlog: Book (2002-03-01)
Publisher: HarperTrophy
Sales Rank: 9958
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Maybe you've heard before that poetry is magic, and it made you roll your eyes, but I believe it's true. Poetry matters. At the most important moments, when everyone else is silent, poetry rises to speak.

I wrote this book to help you write poems and to give practical ideas for making your poems sound the way you want them to sound. We're not going to smash poems up into the tiniest pieces. This book is about writing poetry, not analyzing it. I want this book to help you have more wonderful. moments in the poetry you write. I want you to feel the power of poetry. it's my hope that through this book you will discover lots of ways to make your poems shine, sing, soar...

-- Ralph Fletcher

... Read more

Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars This is a Great Book for learning how to write poetry!
Hi, I really enjoyed reading Ralph Fletcher's book "Poetry Matters: Writing a Poem from the inside out." He gives lots of good examples. He has interviews with two other poets in the book for ideas on poetry. He makes poetry interesting and fun to learn! I also enjoyed his poetry!

4-0 out of 5 stars Well Done
If you feel like you are a real poet within, this book will help you get it out. One word of caution, everyone thinks he or she is a poet. Yes, everyone is a bad poet and every once in a great while a great poet will emerge. ... Read more

9. Poemcrazy : Freeing Your Life with Words
list price: $13.00
our price: $9.75
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0609800981
Catlog: Book (1997-04-01)
Publisher: Three Rivers Press
Sales Rank: 67196
Average Customer Review: 4.82 out of 5 stars
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Poemcrazy is the poetic analog to Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird or Natalie Goldberg'sWriting Down the Bones, twoclassic works on how to forget that you "can't write" and just startthe pen moving. Susan Wooldridge is a swimming instructor in the wide ocean oflanguage, encouraging us to move ever farther from the shore, dive deep, anddance on the waves. ... Read more

Reviews (28)

5-0 out of 5 stars Poemcrazy: The Best Book I've Ever Read!
A friend of mine picked up this book when we were in a book store, knowing that I had come to an almost sudden halt in my poetry writing for the past year or so after having been a poet for four or five years. I was pretty depressed about my writer's block, so I thought, "What the heck," and I bought the book. Not long into the book, which is magnificently written, I began to write again. I haven't stopped since, and my poetry has made massive improvement. The book helps to inspire and recreate that passion that writers can sometimes lose in the midst of the stresses of our days and our constant state of change and growth. --And best of all, it's fun, easy reading!

5-0 out of 5 stars Learning to capture the coyote in all of us
In this book, Susan G. Wooldridge helps us capture our personal coyote and run wild with words. She provides exercises that tap into those regions of one's soul where it is sometimes frightening, yet exhilarating. Real writing comes from those precarious zip codes, and Wooldridge's book is a road map to take us there. She demonstrates how self-examination makes poetry accessible, and she shares stories from her own life that have helped her create poetry. Wooldridge also discusses how poetry is all about enlarging minor details: "we can make a small occasion large by the focus of our attention." (p45) The exercises included are appropriate for all ages and are not limited to the creation of poetry. Whether you are writing fiction, essays or just want to play with words, Poemcrazy is a good addition to your writing reference library.

5-0 out of 5 stars For artists in all media
I'm a visual artist, not a poet or fiction artist. This small book made more difference in my artistic output this winter than any other influence. I've ordered copies for my walking buddy (so we can share the excercises) and a writer friend in the cold north. Heart-full and not hokey...these chapters appeal to the 7th grade child in all of us. Before we knew what was "cool", we knew how to tap the muse.

Order extra copies for all your friends!

5-0 out of 5 stars Admittedly Loca for Poemcrazy.......
Poemcrazy by Susan Goldsmith Wooldridge is one of those rare books which is best read slowly, over time, perhaps as you read other books so that you can take the time to try the different exercises, revisit favored passages and really take the time to listen to exactly what Wooldridge is teaching.

Is it poetry or is it life?

Is it writing or is it personal freedom and individuality?

From my experience, it is a bit of both and all of the above and more.

The book is presented in 5 major sections. I found sections 4 and 5 to be crescendo-esque, filled with a-ha moments and ideas for me to take into my poetry (and other) writing practice.

Earlier reviews concur that this title is reminiscent of Natalie Goldberg and Anne Lamott: in my estimation, these are really great indications of a solid, enjoyable, applications oriented read. I was not disappointed.

My only disappointment in regards to this book is that I have not been able to find anything else by the same author..... hopefully this will change!

5-0 out of 5 stars Helpful for non-poets and teachers too
I have been unsuccessfully trying to get students interested in poetry. I keep pointing out how interesting, how beautiful, etc. it is, with dead stares back at me...But I introduced Susan Wooldridge's word tickets as an exercise and the students loved it! So did I. I just listened to some songs and wrote tons of adjectives, nouns and a few verbs in MS Word using an address label format, then changed the fonts to be fun and different, printed them out and made copies, then cut up all of the individual words. I probably have 600 words times 3-4 copies. The students loved picking the words out of such a plentiful supply, and even the least interested ones got into the exercise. I love experiential exercises, and this one really works. My hope is that now when they look at poems again, they'll see them differently. At least after a few sessions maybe.

If Susan Wooldridge is reading this, then I would like to say thank you with great feeling...learning to teach has been difficult and sometimes discouraging...with several great highs. This was definitely a peak. I'll close by saying that I'm looking at a word ticket now and it says "plum pebbles"... ... Read more

10. The Power of Poems: Teaching the Joy of Writing Poetry
by Margriet Ruurs, Margaret Ruurs
list price: $14.95
our price: $12.71
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Asin: 0929895444
Catlog: Book (2000-11-01)
Publisher: Maupin House Publishing, Inc.
Sales Rank: 601125
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Poet and children's author Margriet Ruurs shows teachers of grades 3-8 how to introduce poetry to encourage creativity while teaching solid craft skills. Supports national, state, and provincial language-arts standards. Features mini-lessons that teach the craft of poetry and stimulate creativity. ... Read more

Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Power of Poems: Teaching the Joy of Writing
Reading this book is like sitting down with the author to gain knowledge and understanding of how to best help children enjoy reading and writing poetry. It's an easy read that compels one to write and facilitate a successful poetry unit. Ruurs references numerous sources (books as well as Internet sites) that will help the reader be successful. This book is a "must read" that is worth every penny spent! ... Read more

11. Beyond Roses Are Red, Violets Are Blue: A Practical Guide for Helping Students Write Free Verse
by Benjamin Green
list price: $19.95
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Asin: 1877673285
Catlog: Book (1996-09-01)
Publisher: Cottonwood Pr
Sales Rank: 676850
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

For many teachers, poetry can be a difficult subject to teach. Poet Benjamin Green makes it easy with this practical and insightful book.

With clear examples, Green leads students through each of 26 exercises, helping them create thoughtful, high-quality poems. The process begins with "word gathering," a series of prompts designed to generate ideas, words, phrases, information and images. Students then "extract" a poem from this material, choosing the most interesting and descriptive words. Finally, Green guides them through the revision process. The book also includes suggested readings and samples of poems by real students.

For students of any age, grades 5 and up. 162 pages, 81/2"11", reproducible. ... Read more

Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Easy to Use Lessons for Writing Poetry
I have used this book with whole-class instruction and individual work. Either way, the lessons are so easy to understand that students walk away with well-thought out poems. Each lesson offers steps for prewriting and examples of finished poems. Students have fun with the various options to write about! ... Read more

12. Poetic Meter and Poetic Form
by PaulFussell
list price: $28.12
our price: $28.12
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Asin: 0075536064
Catlog: Book (1979-01-01)
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Humanities/Social Sciences/Languages
Sales Rank: 58561
Average Customer Review: 4.67 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars Good
Expensive isn't it! But it's the most excellent book on writing poetry and poetic form I've read. Fussell has a masterful understanding of the material and handles it with great style and insight.

4-0 out of 5 stars Guiding analysis
A good introduction to the mechanics, usefulness, and limitations of scansion and rhyme forms. His examples are well-chosen and illuminating.

My main beef with Fussell is that I think he puts too much stress on the limitations of convention -- on how much past use of a form shackles future use. But then, I'm a young poet with a couple bones to pick, so apply salt as needed.

5-0 out of 5 stars the best book on poetry
Fussell describes how forms of poetry define and focus the poem. He does this really well.

If I knew a really effective superlative, I'd use it here. Nothing comes to mind. Shouldn't have drunk so much.

This is the best book on poetry.

5-0 out of 5 stars excellent text
I came across this book for my Poetic Analysis class in college. It is an exellent book on meter and form. I can't even say how much this book has helped me with both reading and writing poetry. If you want to write better poetry or understand the poetry you read, then this is a good book to pick up.

5-0 out of 5 stars a classic in the field of formal verse
This book is a classic of prosodic exposition. (And understand, when I call a book a classic, I am not just lapsing into a cliche; it really IS a classic.) Fussell shows us the relations between form and content, between rhyme and rhythm on the one hand and the function of these formal devices to illuminate meaning on the other. The book also devotes a chapter to empirical observations on the properties of free verse, and it includes a concise bibliography of other works on prosody. Highly recommended. ... Read more

13. Opening The Invitation : The Poem That Has Touched Lives Around the World
by Oriah Mountain Dreamer
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Asin: 0060593229
Catlog: Book
Publisher: HarperSanFrancisco
Sales Rank: 24771
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Book Description

This beautiful edition of the beloved poem -- including the story behind its widespread popularity, and the author's reflections -- is for anyone who loved the bestselling book The Invitation, or wants to share the gift of Oriah Mountain Dreamer's inspirational writing with a friend. Shared by word of mouth, passed along on the Internet, recited over the radio, and read aloud at spiritual conferences, weddings, and other gatherings, the poem is cherished by the thousands who have discovered and treasured its unique message. Now, readers will learn not only what inspired Oriah to write the poem, but how "The Invitation" haschanged lives by presenting a powerful and inspirational challenge to all of us who long for true intimacy and joy.

... Read more

14. Discovery of Poetry
by Francis Mayes
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Asin: 0155001620
Catlog: Book (1994-01-02)
Publisher: Heinle
Sales Rank: 335128
Average Customer Review: 4.83 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

THE DISCOVERY OF POETRY introduces the art and craft of poetry. From an early tribal orison on the rising sun to a recent freeway lyric just out of the word processor, poems always reveal the writer's concerns, feelings, and values. Starting with words and images, this book hopes to help the student understand the importance of word choice and image-making, building a foundation as he or she learns about rhythm, voice, and structure. Questions and writing prompts help facilitate class discussion and a deeper thinking about poetry. The last chapter, "A Poet's Handbook," breaks down the creative process of the poet from creating images to revision. THE DISCOVERY OF POETRY will help facilitate a deeper appreciation and understanding of poetry. ... Read more

Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great for all writers.
I've read the book once through and found that it's so resourceful that I'm now going back and doing extensive notes on each chapter. You certainly don't have to do this to gain some knowledge from this book, however she goes into great detail about every aspect of poetry she mentions. Not to mention the poems she adds are works of art in themselves. I recommend this book to anyone who loves to write.

4-0 out of 5 stars Massive, Deep and Worth It
I was excited to discover this book, although its massive size at first made me curious. How much stuff is packed in here? I wondered.

The excellent features of this book include the "In Your Notebook" sections where you can try out the techniques and strategies Mayes has just explained. I also really enjoy the variety of poets whose works are introduced.

However, there are some moments where there is so much detail that I found myself losing interest and not retaining as much. In that respect, it really showed Mayes background with a university-type audience.

It is definitely worth it to have on any aspiring poet's shelf. I can see myself using this as a reference and as an inspiration for years to come.

5-0 out of 5 stars I bought this book for my daughter, then
I bought this book for my daughter, since she came home from school suddenly interested in writing poetry and I found it so fascinating that I bought another copy for myself. I've read Mayes's other books and loved them and sense that same person speaking, clearly and directly, but this time about a subject I've never really warmed to. And she's opened my eyes to another world, helped me tear down and push away all those cliches I had about poetry. Now I'm not so "afraid" when I read a poem that I'm not going to get it. She's very calmly shown me that a poem can just "be." My daughter loves it too and she's sixteen. Highly recommended for those who have always wondered why they never really understood what poetry was all about, but really wanted to.

5-0 out of 5 stars A soulful introduction to poetry
I've bought and read many "Introduction to Poetry" books over the past several years, but this one is my favorite.

Most of the books of this genre are long on technical information, but lack passion behind the text. Think of a book about music written by a mathematician; The writer might get the technical points across, but the joy of experiencing the music would probably be lacking.

This book presents both the technical information necessary to enjoy poetry, and a selection wonderful poems that demonstrate the principles first hand. In fact, Ms. Mayes is so adept at selecting suitable poems that I think she could prove to be an anthologist of the highest caliber (hopefully she'll read this suggestion and take it to heart).

I recommend this book to anyone who has been baffled by poetry in the past. Enjoy the delights of this book for a time and you'll be hooked on poetry for good.

By the way, do the writing exercises too. You just may find your inner poet.

5-0 out of 5 stars Poetry Demystified
Anyone who is familiar with Mayes' books Under a Tuscan Sun and Bella Tuscany will not be at all surprised that she has written a book about poetry. In recounting the story of how she and her husband discovered and renovated their home in Italy, her writing moves with the rhythms of a poet's voice and savors words for their sounds and textures as well as the images they evoke.

The author of 5 books of poetry and a creative writing teacher at San Francisco State University for years, Mayes has turned her experiences into a simple, straightforward approach to reading, appreciating and writing poetry. Simple, however, does not mean easy. As Mayes is quick to point out, poetry requires concentration, contemplation and the suspension of our linear and time driven expectations. Even the results of reading and writing poetry, she cautions, are not what we might expect. "...many of us are overtrained to read for factual information," says Mayes. "Overly pragmatic, we look for a result, a conclusion."

Mayes' approach to studying poetry is to set the simple fundamentals that are common to all poetry before the reader and then let poems themselves illustrate her points. The book is divided into 11 parts, which cover everything from reading and interpretation, points of view, and imagery, to the mechanics of rhyme and meter, traditional versus free verse, and tips for would be writers. However, the thing that impressed me most throughout the book were her choices of poems to include, and her insightful commentary on them. These comments are offered with genuine pleasure and the graciousness of a friend sharing something she truly loves. There is nothing high handed or condescending in her discussions. Instead you feel like you've been invited to share in a delightful secret or been offered the chance to join a special club. This is a book that given the time and careful consideration it deserves will help you fall in love with poetry. ... Read more

15. When I Was Cool : My Life at the Jack Kerouac School
by Sam Kashner
list price: $25.95
our price: $16.35
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Asin: 0060005661
Catlog: Book (2004-02)
Publisher: HarperCollins
Sales Rank: 51592
Average Customer Review: 3.33 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

As a restless kid on Long Island, Sam Kashner lapped up the beauty and madness of the Beats, living vicariously through the novels, poems, and stories of Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, and William Burroughs. Their words were revolutionary, and they turned their very lives into art. Kashner didn't want to just study the Beats, he wanted to be one of them. So when he heard that Ginsberg had founded an unconventional writing program in Boulder, Colorado, he convinced his parents that college could wait, and became the first certificate student of the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics.

In one motion, Kashner stepped out of a sheltered suburban life and plunged into the chaotic world of his idols. What he discovered was both everything and not at all what he expected. The Beats were facing their twilight years and feeling it in their joints and in their minds. Some of them, like Ginsberg and Burroughs, had achieved international fame, while others, like Gregory Corso, had not, and were coming to the realization that they might never receive the recognition they deserved. In his new role as student, secretary, and psychiatrist, Sam Kashner was caught up in the hilarity of the hijinks and the cross fire of old arguments, finding himself in hot tubs with Ginsberg and on field trips to the marijuana ranch cultivated by Burroughs and his ill-fated son, Billy.

Out of this rich material Kashner brings us a funny, touching, and irreverent portrait of the Beats never before seen: one that explodes the myths surrounding these American icons, but one that is also deeply felt and full of admiration. After reading this book, you'll never look at the Beats in quite the same way again.

When I Was Cool is also a very personal journey of a young man coming of age on the Beat slope of Mount Parnassus ("the Lower East Side" of the Rockies), a kind of Holden Caulfield for the postmodern era.

... Read more

Reviews (9)

2-0 out of 5 stars Interesting but not necessarily accurate
I have no way of knowing how much Sam Kashner remembers about what happened to him thirty yars ago. What I can say is that almost every statement he makes about music in this book is wrong:

*Jim Carroll's "People Who Died" isn't about his friends who died of heroin overdoses, it's about friends who died in a variety of ways.
*Graham Parker's record is called "Squeezing Out Sparks," not "Sparks Fly Upward." But Kashner couldn't have heard it when he says he did because it wasn't released until 1979.
*If we're to believe the chronology in the book, Kashner's girlfriend has a poster of Johnny Rotten in her house in 1976 and the Go-Gos came to Boulder in early 1977. The fact is, very few Americans would have known who Johnny Rotten was at the time, since the Sex Pistols didn't put out their first single in the U.K. until November of that year. And the Go-Gos, of course, hadn't even been formed yet.
*The band that Kashner remembers as Loud Fast Rules was surely the New York punk-pop band, the Stimulators, whose first single was a song called "Loud Fast Rules" and who were friendly with Ginsberg, but they didn't exist in 1977 either.
*Ginsberg played live and recorded with the Clash in the early 80s, but the band didn't tour America until 1979. And Ginsberg never appeared in a Clash video called "Combat Rock" (or any other Clash video) because that was the name of an album not a song. He did appear on a song on that album, however.
*Ginsberg did record a new wave-inspired single called "Birdbrain," but again it wasn't released until 1981.

Yes, these are minor quibbles, but it only takes a few basic factual errors, which surely could have been checked by either the writer or his editor, to throw the accuracy of the whole book into doubt and to make the reader wonder how much of what Kashner says happened actually did.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Great Memoir About an Alternative Academy
When I Was Cool by Sam Kashner is one of the best books ever written about the so-called Beat poets, or as they were more commonly called, the beatniks. This is in large part due to the fact that he was in an ideal place to witness several of the leading writers in this movement do their thing for a prolonged period of time.

Kashner was the first ever, and for a time the one and only, student at the Jack Kerouac School for aspiring writers at Boulder, Colorado. This was an attempt at an alternative school that went unaccredited throughout its existence.

The Jack Kerouac School was both founded and lead by Allen Ginsberg. Among its alumni were such luminaries as William Burroughs, Gregory Corso, Ann Waldman as well as Ginsberg himself.

Kashner kept copious notes and a diary in which he recorded the various goings on at the school. That being the case, When I Was Cool offers readers a portrait of a time and place and people that has since gone by the wayside. It is well worth the reading time of anyone with an interest in the 1970's scene.

5-0 out of 5 stars Well Spoken
Sam Kashner is a writer of flawless virtue but noticible simplicity. He did an audacious deed by creating a book that helps merely a bit to understanding the complex beauty of the idols of our nation; the beats. Sam Kashner gave life to the literal meaning of America's swelled and drunken past that wove itself into a fine threaded combination of poetry and writing. He did a wonderful job and showed merciless compassion for the people that mattered most to him. The book is a true wonder and was made to be read to unravel some truth to the loved era of the beatnik generation.

2-0 out of 5 stars Not cool
I set out to read this book because I am very interested in the school itself, which I still maintain, but I was sorely disappointed with the book itself. It should have been divided into two seperate stories, one about Kashner and one about the school--but how could he write a memoir and not include how "cool" he was--hanging out with the beats?

I most certainly agree with Chris Jansen's list of problem's with this book. The obscure literary references were incredibly frustrating, it just led to me feeling alienated and uneducated. At one point Kashner refers to Ginsberg as a "jambon" for no reason but to, apparently, demonstrate his talent at remembering French words for food.

Don't waste your money on this one, wait till your library gets it, or, if you're desperate to own it, until it comes to paperback.

3-0 out of 5 stars Boulder was Cool once !
Kashner writes with a humility that grows on the reader. The first half of the book was a sort of get acquainted period and the second half was frequently a gutbuster laugh. Of all the Beats he met Corso was his best pal. Ginsberg gets the wilting pansy label and Burroughs Sr comes off a lot more human and funny then most other portraits. The style of memory memoir is fine with mini chapter style. A fun read. ... Read more

16. Kiss of God - The Wisdom of a Silent Child
by Marshall Stewart Ball
list price: $9.95
our price: $8.96
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1558747435
Catlog: Book (1999-09-01)
Publisher: Health Communications
Sales Rank: 182433
Average Customer Review: 4.76 out of 5 stars
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Marshall Stewart Ball had his first book of spiritual writings published at the age of 13, an impressive feat for any young teenager. But Marshall is not just any teenager. Soon after he was born it was discovered that he would probably never walk or speak. Despite his numerous physical disabilities (no doctor has been able to diagnose him with any specific diseases, illnesses, or genetic abnormalities), Marshall learned to communicate by pointing to letters on an alphabet board.

He first wrote about God at age five in a compelling poem titled "Altogether Lovely." It soon became apparent that this special child liked to "speak" often and deeply about God, love, knowledge, and freedom--sophisticated topics for a sheltered lad of 5. By age 9 Marshall tested above a 12th-grade reading level. Meanwhile, he continued with his laborious pointing/writing sessions--revealing an unusual voice with a distinct rhythm and a disarming spiritual wisdom. Fortunately, Marshall's parents saved his writings and compiled them into Kiss of God, allowing the world to behold this "silent" teacher. Each poem or essay gets a brief introduction so that readers know the story behind his loving words and how old Marshall was when he wrote it. These intimate introductions help readers see the true miracles of Marshall's life and gifts. --Gail Hudson ... Read more

Reviews (37)

5-0 out of 5 stars Marshall is love- Book Review from The Northwoods Journal
Some may call him a boy genius. Others may call him a prophet. One thing is certain about poet Marshall Ball: Anyone who has ever used the phrase, "simple but profound," does not know the meaning of that phrase until he or she reads Marshall's Kiss of God.

Marshall began writing at the age of 5 but not in the way other children write. While his elbow is supported, he points to individual letters on an alphabet board. Someone jots down Marshall's message letter by letter, and Marshall alone provides the editing and title. Marshall does not compose his writings orally, because he cannot speak.

Through a veil of silence, Marshall Ball speaks by the Kiss of God to any heart yearning for inspiration. Marshall's style of writing is wholly original, and the most learned reader will marvel at Marshall's syntax. When Marshall was collecting the writings he wished to place in Kiss of God, by the way, he composed before his 12th birthday, his mother asked him how his book should be arranged. He responded, "Attempting good fine force badly spilts Kiss of God apart." When she asked him what he meant by "force," he answered, "Forcing is giving good book great organization. Can you give love by force?"

Kiss of God builds on the premise that God is good and that "Good God," as Marshall calls Him, is his "good candid teacher." Marshall sees only good in himself, and he imparts good effortlessly. The sheer innocence of this volume prevents it from being didactic. Marshall simply sets forth insights or what he calls "kisses" from God. "Great kisses are loving, grand, great little thoughts, " he writes.

Some kisses from God come to Marshall as poems. Some come as letters. And others arrive as aphorisms. In a single-sentence letter to his "Great Good Grandpa," Marshall writes, "My feeling is our thoughts ran together for love." This tone of love and yielding to love prevails throughout Marshall's work. "In pure great Love real intelligence is manifested," he says. And he says, "Good finds the sweet giver."

After setting the tone of love in Kiss of God, Marshall offers to the reader a note in which he sets forth the purpose of his book. In alluding to the eternal questions about happiness, Marshall says, "Questions want good answers. With the help of my family and dear friends, I have been able to answer thoughts concerning old beliefs about questions regarding why people are not happy." In the following pages of Kiss of God, Marshall proves his point.

Recognition of Kiss of God is surging. Already in a second printing since an intial self-publication two years ago, the book is being republished by Health Communications, Inc., the publisher of the "Chicken Soup for the Soul Series." Marshall's publicist, Phenix & Phenix, states in an exclusive interview with this editor that negotiations are underway for Marshall to appear on the Oprah Winfrey Show.

While many poets align with suffering and consume their creativity in crafting images of pain, Marshall Ball, seemingly fulfilling the biblical prophecy that "a little child shall lead them," writes from the perspective that there is no pain. It is not enough to say poet Marshall aligns to good, to love. Marshall IS love.

5-0 out of 5 stars A flower of consciousness appears among us
As heralded by such masters as Eckhart Tolle and Don Miguel Ruiz the earth at this time is graced by a number of awakened divine flowers of consciousness which grace us with their tremendous healing power and gentility. Marshall Ball is no doubt one such light in our world. His healing gift is through the power of his words. In these important documents of our time [Kiss of God & A Good Kiss] Marshall Ball uses his gentle and seemingly simple use of the English language to incite a healing effect that evokes deep emotions and directly effects the heart. Short of a miracle, both of Marshall Ball's books are a collection of communications poetically expressed and clearly echo teachings from A Course in Miracles, Eckhart Tolle's Power of Now and Stillness Speaks, and the Conversations with God books, none of which have been a source of study for this young man of 17. It seems Truth is spoken again by another source of pure love, but here, with heavenly gentleness and a poetic voice that can lift and heal the coldest of hearts. I highly recommend reading and studying both "Kiss of God" and "A Good Kiss" as material for spiritual study and personal growth. May this gentle heavenly force continue to grace us with his divine wisdom and healing voice.

5-0 out of 5 stars Listen To The Children
Marshall Ball is exquisite. With the simplicity of a child and the wisdom of the ages, he speaks with a profound understanding that could only be Divine. Marshall cannot speak, so he uses an alphabet board to point to each letter. This is a painstakingly long process. He was born with a disease that keeps him confined to a wheelchair. At age nine, he was evaluated at school with a twelfth-grade reading level. I was pleasantly inspired by Marshall and eagerly await more writings from him. My favorite quote from Marshall is: "Can we free the world to think perfectly about the listening and marvelous children?" I highly recommend this book.

5-0 out of 5 stars A great book for a spiritual journey!!
A great book for traveling on a journey with a special child. If you have a special child, get this book, because you may learn more about your child, and their own journey and thoughts. If you don't have an special child, then get this book and learn about the blessings that come with the pain and challenges of the journeys that parents of special children travel.

Book Review
Marshall writes, with physical assistance, of things we cannot see, or imagine in our busy and cluttered lives. Yet, these are the important, and permanent things that life is determined on, not the urgent and unimportant.

His poems are very good (fantastic considering his age and issues) and offer a mature, yet spiritually innocent viewpoint that remains objective and not caught up with our worldly challenges.

Marshall is here and suffers in order to fulfill God's purpose of helping us, and those who need spiritual assistance.

How Marshall Helped Us Learn of Our Daughter's Thoughts, and Experiences:
We have a daughter with severe cerebral palsy who cannot speak or walk an had just finished two weeks of therapy in Chicago and were catching a plane for the ride home. This was two years ago, so she was four at the time. By accident, I packed her reading books, so we stopped in the book store to find a book to read. We accidently came across Marshall's book and I explained to my daughter that Marshall was like her, and could not speak or walk, and was just a few years older. Then, I asked her if she wanted to get Marshall's book, she got very excited (happy).

On the plane we read the first few pages and came across this part of Marshall's poem...

Even though my individuality finds
sweet knowing perfection, I listen
for the answers to wishes from above.

So, I asked my daughter if God spoke to her about her wishes and prayers. She just about jumped out of her skin!!! It was like finally!!!! Someone knows my secrets!!!! Yes, I speak to God and He speaks to me!!!!

I was startled, and asked her some poorly developed questions. After a couple of months, I thought about the questions I asked and also her answers, and I realized that I really did not learn what I thought I had learned. (We have to ask her questions, with two or three answers for her to choose from, then ask additional questions to further determine her correct and precise answers).

Because I only want the truth, regardless of the issues, I spent some time to relaly think about the questions, and alternative answers that could be gleaned from my technique, then began to ask her more precise questions to nail down her responses.

What I found is that she did speak to and hear from God every night. That she did remember her personal journey (died at birth for 35 minutes), and remembered seeing God when she died. She did not remember being in the hospital, being taken off life support, or anything else.

But, when she died, she went to heaven, and was not given a choice, but was told to return to her Mommy and Daddy (which she wanted); and she was told that her purpose was to help a lot of children who were in need. (...) She came back to us - obviously - and now is a bright 6 year old who goes to full inclusion school, has many friends and lots of fun. Yet, she cannot speak, or walk, yet. (But is making great progress!)

Without reading Marshall's book, I would never have thought to ask these questions, and would have never have learned my daughter's secrets.

5-0 out of 5 stars If you will listen real quietly you can hear God talk to you
This book will touch you. There is a simplicity and purity of thought, but there are deeper more profound meanings there for you to discover on your own. Marshall is a special child of God, as we all are in our own way. Love and listening are prevalent themes in Marshall's short poems and prose. I am a grown man with grown children, and I am not prone to tears, but many of Marshall's words brought tears to my eyes. I know God talks through Marshall. Share this book with your friends and family. ... Read more

17. Celebrate Through Heartsongs
by Mattie J.T. Stepanek
list price: $14.95
our price: $10.47
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Asin: 0786869453
Catlog: Book (2002-08)
Publisher: Hyperion
Sales Rank: 9068
Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

A spiritual and uplifting new collection of poems, from the New York Times bestselling poet and peacemaker Mattie J.T. Stepanek.

Mattie J.T. Stepanek is an award-winning poet whose struggle with a rare form of muscular dystrophy has touched the lives of people nationwide. Celebrate Through Heartsongs, his fourth inspiring collection of poetry, features works written between the ages of three and eleven, and continues to spread Mattie's message of universal hope, peace, courage, and love. Fully illustrated by the poet, the collection will appeal to people of all ages, religions, and beliefs.

Twelve-year-old Mattie J.T. Stepanek, has been writing poetry and short stories since age three. Mattie is currently the Maryland State and National Goodwill Ambassador for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. He is the recipient of several awards, including the 2002 Children's Hope Medal of Honor and the 2002 Verizon Courage Award. He lives with his mother, Jeni, in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, where he is homeschooled.

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Reviews (10)

4-0 out of 5 stars The Stars are Shining in Your Heart Tonight
Mattie Stepanek's poetry leaves some people wondering how a child could express his thoughts and feelings with such style and grace, and yet as I read through the pages I find myself understanding exactly what he means, and remembering my own special words for entities when I was a child. Mattie is sparked with the grace all of us are born with, but few continue to hold. He exhibits real intelligence, not by calculating or giving us a technological advancement, not by teaching us how to manage our money or how to avoid shelling it out to the IRS. Mattie's intelligence is of the highest variety--the understanding that Love is Law and that the only things of value in this world are the eternal souls--fellow human beings made in the Creator's Image--that we meet and hopefully commune with (rather in a sandbox or by a fireplace) every day of our lives.

5-0 out of 5 stars Mattie - May you rest in peace. Some angels will envy you.
I'd never heard of Mattie until I tuned into Larry King one night during June 2004 to watch his show. The show was dedicated to Mattie after his untimely death from muscular dystrophy. All I can say is that I was both moved and inspired. Hearing Mattie (the show was a re-run of his 2002 appearance) read his poetry was just amazing. He saw things in ways that only a child could see. Maybe as we grow up, we look at the world differently, but his vision of the world through his poetry was refreshing and inspirational.
Being a screenwriter, I am always looking for inspiration. I have a young female character that I had developed only so far. It appears Mattie was the missing piece. It seems I was "meant" to watch that show, to take something from it. I will now complete that character by moulding some of Mattie's ideals and traits into that character.

Mattie, in your short life, you achieved more than I think I have in my 28 years on this Earth. I am a dreamer and much of my time has been wasted dreaming. Your illness was was your weakness, but your strenght showed how weak I am. Time is precious and you made the most of your time on this Earth.

With your poetry, you will have the last word. Hopefully we can all take something from your words, that are so simple, but are formed in such an awe-inspiring way. The world is complicated right now. But simple is always best. And you were the best. God Bless.

5-0 out of 5 stars Now here is a role model for our children!
I am a single mother of a 7 month little boy, Georgi. My mother bought all of Mattie's books for me to read to my son and I am so grateful to have Mattie's books which celebrate love, tolerance and peace. I will use Mattie's books for guidance to raise a mindful young man who I hope also chooses to become a peacemaker and poet. God bless Mattie and his mother. We are blessed to have known Mattie who inspired so many people. The world is a better place because he lived!

5-0 out of 5 stars Keep Going Mattie! Outstanding Work!
Mattie's heart shines so brightly through his work, and uplifts the spirits of those who may feel like there is nothing left to live for. He is a beacon in the dark, and his writing is soothing to the soul.
Keep going Mattie, no matter what ANYONE says, keep up your fantastic work. You are truly a gift to humanity, and your writing is incredibly beautiful, touching, and deeply needed!
10 Stars!

5-0 out of 5 stars What Is Love
The Following is A Poem By the Composer Mehdi (pronounced meddie)From the CD~Instrumental Heaven Volume 7.
This artist was going to put music to Matties Poems.
Samples are at

What Is Love?
Love Is The Scent Of Flowers In The Spring, It Is The Silent Choirs Of Petals.
Love Is The Song Of The Soul, Singing To God.
It Is The Balanced Rhythmic Dance Of Planets The Sun And The Moon.
It Is The Thirst Of The Rose To Drink The Sunrays And Blush Red With Life.
It Is The Ineffable, Silent Call Of The Heart To Another Heart.
It Is The Call Of God Through Silent Intelligence's And Starbursts Of Feelings.
Love Is Heaven, Toward Which The Flowers, Rivers, Nations, Atoms, Creatures,
You And I Are Rushing By The Straight Path Of Action, Or Winding Laboriously On
Errors Path, All To Reach Heaven There At Last.

A Portion Of This Album Goes To Help Fight World Hunger ... Read more

18. The Place My Words Are Looking For : What Poets Say About and Through Their Work
by Paul B. Janeczko
list price: $17.95
our price: $12.21
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Asin: 0027476715
Catlog: Book (1990-04-30)
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
Sales Rank: 229205
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19. The Book of Forms: A Handbook of Poetics
by Lewis Turco
list price: $21.95
our price: $21.95
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Asin: 1584650222
Catlog: Book (2000-03-01)
Publisher: University Press of New England
Sales Rank: 212792
Average Customer Review: 3.67 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Companion to the Book of Literary Terms,an indispensable handbook, revised and updated for today's users. ... Read more

Reviews (6)

2-0 out of 5 stars A book I---unfortunately--turn to often
Turco is clearly a man in lust of poetic forms and methods. How long he spent learning the art, compiling information on various meters, stanzas, rhyme schems, and the like, I can't say, but he's done a very thorough job. That he doesn't cover free verse is perfectly understandable as this is, indeed, a book of forms (but to dismiss it outright as poetry at all is part of Turco's trademark pretention). Unfortunately, for somebody writing a book subtitled "A Handbook of Poetics," Turco not only doesn't attempt to make this handbook easy to use, at times he seems to bend over backwards to cause as much frustration as possible.
Take, for instance, an example. Let's say you want to write a Spenserian stanza. Well, you go and check the index--there are four pages listed, but page 271 is in bold, so you turn there (be glad you weren't looking up shanty, which contains two listings, both in bold). Well, no such luck, instead we are told that the Spenserian stanza is discussed in the "section on Narrative Poetry." One can respect Turco's decision not to repeat information already stated, but to not even give a simple page number where an outline of the form can be found smacks of a pretentious "I already told you that" attitude. It won't take long to check the other three listings, but by then the annoyance has already set in.
The six-page specific form index, where poetic forms and stanzas are arranged according to the number of lines they contain would be quite helpful--if Turco provided page numbers here. Apparently because he put them in the misleading index there was no need to put them in a place where they would be easily accessible and more useful. An extra twenty minutes on Turco's part could have eased a lot of headaches.
This is a helpful book that would come in handy for any poet or prosody student. But after three editions and still being arranged in such a ridiculous matter, I can't hep but think that it's time a new Book of Forms written by somebody who is not Lewis Turco to be published.

3-0 out of 5 stars lots of good information arranged in a Borges-ian labyrinth.
Lots of cross-referencing to dead-ends, not knowing which list you're in or which one you 'want' to be in. You begin to wonder if you'll ever get a sense of how this guy's mind works, and indeed why you should have to. Commonsensical and conventional devices like separating topics on the page with a space or two (when sample poems are separated from the rest of the text), highlighting or printing topic headings in bold lettering, printing page numbers opposite listed topics which are covered elsewhere-they are not employed. You can't tell if what you're looking at is a topic or a subtopic of something else. Exhortations to buy and refer to Turco's other book pepper the discussions.

The author is idiosyncratic and standoffish; he is not awfully encouraging. The precision in terms turns to nitpicking. So under "Free Verse" we are told that free verse is a contradiction in terms. Since this was said in the introduction and since we're supposed to refer to the index before turning here, perhaps we should have read or should now re-read these very general topics. He might just as easily have given us as meaningful a discussion as could be given of whatever is generally taken to be free verse, even with all the necessary clarifications.

A tough editor could redeem some future edition.

3-0 out of 5 stars Jam-packed with forms, flaws
This book has the most poetic forms in one convenient place of any book in my university's library. It is especially good for Welsh, Irish and Japanese native forms. However, I have quibbles with the notational system and vanity of the author.

His example poems and "translations in the form" are simply not good. Too many of them are by himself or someone named Wesli Court and they are dull, dull, dull compared to, say, the sparkling examples in John Hollander's Rhyme's Reason. The form-finder index is a good idea, but since it doesn't include rhyme schemes or line-lengths it requires you to read entries on dozens of forms to find the one you are looking for. Rather than have the entries organized like an encylopedia, the information is in essay-like paragraphs, requiring extra reading and searching. Hardly "quick and easy-to-use." Finally, his scansion system is inconsistent and sometimes the accents are printed off-alignment, making it difficult to determine which syllables have what value. The meanings of different symbols change depending on whether the verse is quantitative, accentual-syllabic, pure syllabic or pure accentual; rhymed or partially-rhymed. He often expects you to intuit which is which.

All that said, this book does contain a wealth of information. If you are looking for a beginning introduction to poetry, I would recommend Rhyme's Reason or Timothy Steele's All the Fun's in How You Say a Thing. Pros will want this one on the shelf, and will be better able to take it with the necessary salt.

5-0 out of 5 stars Prosody restores discipline and respectability to poesy.
This is a well written book suffused with brilliant elucidation of the art of poetry. In substantiating impalpable words, the author presents their appeal mostly to our sense of hearing and, to a smaller extent, of seeing ordinary words on a page and then in the mind's eye as we visualize the imagery poets invoke in extraordinary ways. "The Book of Forms" is a handbook of poetry that lives up to its name by covering all three traditional verse forms - lyric, narrative and dramatic - thoroughly but not before demonstrating the influence of sound and structure on emotion and meaning. The form-finder index alone, for which Turco "pioneered" some schematic representations of various poetic forms, lines and stanza patterns, is worth the price of the book. For the most part, the author avoids the traditional methods of scansion to promote his that could be more efficient in specifying the number of syllables and accents on a line, the rhyming schemes and the positions of rhymed and unrhymed refrains and repetitions.
At a time when poetry needs to be returned to respectability, (see Dana Gioia's excellent discussion, "Can Poetry Matter?" in the Graywolf Silver Anthology, 1999), the discipline of metered language as well as the elegance of figurative speech should be restored to poesy and this book teaches both very well. While prosody may very well be the bane of many interested in learning the craft of versification, a deliberate reading of this book will also reward one with a heightened appreciation of poetry. The book is more exhaustive than the creative, self-describing gem "Rhyme's Reason" written by Yale's Sterling Professor of English, John Hollander, and even more up-to-date than another acclaimed classic, "Poetic Meter and Poetic Form" by Professor Paul Fussell.

5-0 out of 5 stars Underrated
I keep this underrated volume on the shelf beside such indispensable texts as Paul Fussell's "Poetic Meter and Poetic Form" and John Hollander's "Rhyme's Reason." ... Read more

20. 3 x 33 : Short Fiction by 33 Writers
by Mark Winegardner
list price: $51.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0155104802
Catlog: Book (2004-08-03)
Publisher: Heinle
Sales Rank: 213452
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