"She is always exhilarating for a reader and very educational for a writer. She just happens to be one of the creators among current poets, alive and surprising, and deft." —William Stratford"The world wounds us / with is beauty, as if it knew / we had to leave it soon," Linda Pastan writes in "In a Northern Country," and the poems in this new volume are full of those wounds, that beauty, Whether her subject is the return of childhood ghosts or the metaphor of baseball, whether it is the impact of landscape or the vagaries of family love, Pastan continues to explore and illuminate the mysteries and dangers beneath the common surface of ordinary life. As the Jerusalem Post put it, "She has, in large measure, fulfilled Emerson's dream-the revelation of 'the miraculous in the common." Or, as she herself writes in one of her new poems, "Long after Eden, the imagination flourishes with all its unruly weeds."
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It's been said that the primary responsibility of poets is to remind us that we must die. As its title suggests, Pastan's (Heroes in Disguise) ninth book does precisely this. The atmosphere of the colJan 02 1995 | Read Full Review of An Early Afterlife: Poems
the clear, spare considerations of mortality are set against a backdrop of vividly colored trees and leaf smoke, the season ``mimicking/ the seasons of the flesh/ which are real and final.'' Pastan's strong title poem departs from these usual emblems, however, and ``Almost an Elegy'' digs deeper ...| Read Full Review of An Early Afterlife: Poems