Night Picnic by Charles Simic
Poems

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Synopsis

The poems in Charles Simic's new collection evoke a variety of settings and images, from New York City to small New England towns; from crowds spilling onto the sidewalk on a hot summer night to an abandoned wooden church and a car graveyard overgrown with weeds. His subjects range from a bakery early in the morning to the fingerprints on a stranger's front door; from waiters in an empty restaurant to the decorations in a window of a funeral home; from a dog tied to a chain to a homeless man sleeping at the foot of a skyscraper; and other moments of solitude and clear vision.
"What is beautiful," he writes in one poem, "is found accidentally and not sought after. What is beautiful is easily lost." Simic is the metaphysician of the ordinary, a poet who reminds us of the mysteries of our daily lives.

 

About Charles Simic

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CHARLES SIMIC was born in Belgrade and emigrated to the United States in 1954. He is the author of many books of poetry and prose. Among other honors, he received the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1990 and served as the Poet Laureate of the United States in 2007-2008.
 
Published August 23, 2012 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 96 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Night Picnic

The New York Times

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/ Her bony fingers / Like two white canes / With metal tips / Tap their slow way / It's something about you and me, / Something official, / A registered letter / We'll be wary to open.'' The banally obedient typist and the insouciant woman from ''Bible Lesson'' are the only two ''shes'' in the bo...

Oct 21 2001 | Read Full Review of Night Picnic: Poems

Publishers Weekly

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The third and most moving of the book's three parts departs from Simic's usual pattern, offering saddened epigrams followed by powerful meditations on death and old age, considered as a raindrop, as a kitchen or as a restaurant—"The check is being added in the back/ As we speak."

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