David Young, the distinguished poet and translator, offers us a gorgeous cycle of poems attuned to the Midwestern seasons—to weather both emotional and actual. A writer of thrilling invention and humanity, Young beckons the reader into an effortless proximity with the fox at the field’s edge, with the chattering crow and the startling first daffodils of spring. In his tour of both exterior and interior landscapes, the poet scatters his father’s ashes and remembers losing his wife, Chloe, to cancer, a loss at times still fresh after several decades; pays homage to the wisdom of the Chinese masters whose aesthetic has helped shape his own; and reflects on the gladdening qualities of a walk in a snowstorm with his black labrador, Nemo:
and in this snowfall that I should detest,
late March and early April, I’m still rapt
to see his coat so constellated, starred, re-starred,
making a comic cosmos I can love.
Young’s expert shaping of this world in which, as he writes, “We’re never going to get God right. But we / learn to love all our failures on the way,” becomes for the reader a fresh experience of life’s mysterious goodness and of the abundant pleasure of the language that embodies it.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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Black labUser Review - Not Available - Book Verdict
In his tenth volume, Ohio poet Young (English, Oberlin Coll.) works in a variety of forms and styles, each of them well crafted, though the less traditional ones aren't as accessible and will likely ... Read full review
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ashes back and neck beauty Billy cut BLACK LAB blue snow Bo juyi BORZOI BOOK Celan CENTO Chloe in Late climbed clouds coat Comets cut the mountain cut the sun DANTE AND VIRGIL dark DAVID YOUNG dawn DISCUS DOCTOR’S HISTORY dream dusk dust Early Spring FATHER’S FAUX PAS feel ﬁght ﬁnish ﬁrst appeared ﬁrst published Five Poems ﬂoat ﬂower Genoa glow GNOSTIC HYMN Here’s HOUR OF BLUE Judy Karasik JUNE 17 kingﬁsher Knopf LATE JANUARY light LITTLE BIGHORN look lt’s Margaret Young memories miss you already Moon Rise mother’s Moving Statue night Notes and Acknowledgments peach PENETRATING THE FOREST Petrarch Watches Plato Poems of Old poets rain Random House Sally cut Secret shattered sleep SMALL MULTIPLE ELEGY smile soybean starred stroll Swithin things THREE February thyself tiny trees Vaucluse VILLANELLE VIRGIL PENETRATING Walking Home Watches the Moon WEAR MY FATHER WINTER SOLSTICE Yoshitoshi you’ll younger