“We have entered an age of unequivocal partisan discourse, of linguistic robotization, of tiny symbols standing for complex emotions. In total contrast to this, Philippe Jaccottet’s writing constantly shows nuance, attentiveness, perseverance, circumspection, and a genuine quest for essential truths.”
Poetry Review: “Outside” — Poetry and Prose of French Writer André du Bouchet.
Take the poems slowly, enjoy the Cage-y silences, the concentrated words as they appear.
Poetry Review: Pierre Reverdy’s “Song of the Dead” — Imprisoned in Life
Despite one’s aspirations to another kind of reality, for Pierre Reverdy one is forced to return to one’s fetters.
Poetry Review: Rediscovering Aimé Césaire — The Politics and Poetics of Negritude.
Valuable new translations of Aimé Césaire suggest that we have overemphasized the political dimension of his poetry and overlooked other, purely literary, qualities.
Poetry Review: “The Collected Poems of Samuel Beckett” — Castings
Have we been missing a major poet while we celebrated a great dramatist and the most influential fiction writer of the second half of the twentieth century?
Book Review: In Quest of the Elemental — André du Bouchet’s “Openwork”
André du Bouchet writes the kind of poetry that other poets ponder, perhaps resist or even reject for a while, yet inevitably return to study even if (or because) their own poetics are starkly dissimilar to his.
Book Review: The Poetry of Pierre Reverdy — The Search for Purity
Pierre Reverdy’s poetry that is suspicious of the deceiving beauty of words, hence its pared-down, elemental, stylistic qualities.
Book Review: Yves Bonnefoy’s Meditation on Poetry — Heady But Essential
Yves Bonnefoy’s book is, fundamentally, a spiritual autobiography; yet it draws extensively on the outside world and ponders how it can be described in writing or depicted in painting.
Poetry Review: A Provocative Step Out of the Shadows — Poet Anna de Noailles
Literary history credits Rainer Maria Rilke with establishing European poetry’s seminal concern with the duality between inner and outer worlds. Could it be that Comtesse Anna de Noailles was his precursor in this regard? Translator Norman Shapiro and Black Widow Press should be thanked for bringing her back into the discussion.
Poetry Review: Yves Bonnefoy — A Provocative “Second Simplicity”
This handsome edition of Yves Bonnefoy’s recent poetry and prose in English translation is a stunning presentation of a major poet.