Front Cover
Bloodaxe Books, 2000 - Poetry - 80 pages
2 Reviews
Inger Christensen is one of Denmark's best-known poets. Her poetry reflects a complex philosophical background, yet it has enjoyed wide public popularity. Many of her poems have a visionary quality, yet she is a paradoxically down-to-earth visionary, focusing on the simple stuff of everyday life and in it discovering the metaphysical, as if by chance.In alphabet, Christensen creates a framework of psalm-like forms that unfold like expanding universes, crystallizing into words both the beauty and the potential for destruction that permeate our world and our times. In this collection, she has created a system by combining the alphabet with Fibonnaci's numeric sequence, in which each number is equal to the sum of the two preceding numbers: 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, etc. alphabet is about the relationship between people and nature and, like it, is itself a form of creation. With the word exist as the pivot, the poems move -- from the first wondering confirmation, apricot trees exist -- out into the world to life and death, the planet and calamity.

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Review: Alphabet

User Review  - Chris - Goodreads

"fisherbird herons exist, with their grey-blue arching backs, with their black-feathered crests and their bright-feathered tails they exist; in colonies they exist, in the so-called Old World; fish ... Read full review

Review: Alphabet

User Review  - Michael Murray - Goodreads

Wonderful book! Incredibly rich, and so complexly structured! What seem at first to be arbitrary and random items are later shown to be part of a complex weave, that are 'things in themselves ... Read full review


e early fall
U June nights
its new for me

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About the author (2000)

Writer Inger Christensen was born in Vejle, Denmark on January 16, 1935. She enrolled in medical school, but had to withdraw due to financial reasons. She received a teaching degree with a concentration in German and mathematics from the Aarhus College of Education. She was a teacher for a few years before becoming a full-time writer. She wrote poems, essays, short stories, children's books, and plays. Her works include It, Alphabet, Butterfly Valley: A Requiem, The Painted Room, and Azorno. She received numerous awards throughout her career including the 1994 Nordic Authors' Prize. She died on January 2, 2009 at the age of 73.

Inger Christensen (1935- 2009), whose work is a cornerstone of modern Scandinavian poetry, was the recipient of many international awards, among them the Nordic Authors' Prize, bestowed by the Swedish Academy and known as the "Little Nobel." Her books include the masterpiece it; alphabet; Butterfly Valley; and Light, Grass, and Letter in April.

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