Orphic Paris by Henri Cole

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The book’s ending, with its series of sentences all beginning with “J’aime,” is exuberant, Whitmanesque, Orphic: “and in this place, I wrote, I was nourished, and I grew.” A wise, astute, and luminous literary commonplace book.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

A poetic portrait of Paris that combines prose poetry, diary, and memoir by award-winning writer and poet Henri Cole.

Henri Cole’s Orphic Paris combines autobiography, diary, essay, and poetry with photographs to create a new form of elegiac memoir. With Paris as a backdrop, Cole, an award-winning American poet, explores with fresh and penetrating insight the nature of friendship and family, poetry and solitude, the self and freedom. Cole writes of Paris, “For a time, I lived here, where the call of life is so strong. My soul was colored by it. Instead of worshiping a creator or man, I cared fully for myself, and felt no guilt and confessed nothing, and in this place I wrote, I was nourished, and I grew.” Written under the tutelary spirit of Orpheus—mystic, oracular, entrancing—Orphic Paris is an intimate Paris journal and a literary commonplace book that is a touching, original, brilliant account of the city and of the artists, writers, and luminaries, including Cole himself, who have been moved by it to create.
 

About Henri Cole

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HENRI COLE was born in Fukuoka, Japan, and was raised in Virginia. The recipient of many awards, he is the author, most recently, of Blackbird and Wolf (FSG, 2007) and Middle Earth (FSG, 2003), which was a Pulitzer Prize finalist.
 
Published April 3, 2018 by New York Review Books. 177 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Education & Reference, Travel, Gay & Lesbian, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction
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Kirkus

Above average
on Jan 08 2018

The book’s ending, with its series of sentences all beginning with “J’aime,” is exuberant, Whitmanesque, Orphic: “and in this place, I wrote, I was nourished, and I grew.” A wise, astute, and luminous literary commonplace book.

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