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An Atlas of the Difficult World

Poems, 1988-91

By Adrienne Rich

(4)

| Paperback | 9780393308310

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Book Description

The heart of Adrienne Rich's award-winning collection beats in its title sequence, 13 poems charting "An Atlas of the Difficult World." Like Atlas, who bears Earth on his shoulders, Rich bears--and wields--an enormous political consciousness. These p Continue

The heart of Adrienne Rich's award-winning collection beats in its title sequence, 13 poems charting "An Atlas of the Difficult World." Like Atlas, who bears Earth on his shoulders, Rich bears--and wields--an enormous political consciousness. These poems find her struggling to say what is honest and true, resisting easy answers, having the ambition to risk everything; these are the energies for which her readers return. For example, after deriding as solipsistic the poetry of Richard Hugo, she writes: I wonder if this is a white man's madness.
I honor your truth and refuse to leave it at that.
What have I learned from stories of the hunt, of lonely men in gangs?
But there were other stories...
Rich knows that mere political poetry has a quick expiration date. Her genius enables her to speak to the moment and to posterity simultaneously. "Catch if you can your country's moment, begin / where any calendar's ripped-off: Appomattox / Wounded Knee, Los Alamos / Selma, the last airlift from Saigon," she exhorts at one point, tuning the present to its history like Muriel Rukeyser or Ezra Pound. Early in the book Rich praises "those needed to teach, advise, persuade, weigh arguments ... the meticulous delicate work of reaching the heart of the desperate woman, the desperate man / --never-to-be-finished, still unbegun work of repair," but wonders who will continue this work in the America she has witnessed. "It cannot be done without them / and where are they now?" With this, her 21st book, her echo returns the answer. --Edward Skoog

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  • 1 person finds this helpful

    I know you are reading this poem which is not in your language
    guessing at some words while others keep you reading
    and I want to know which words they are.
    I know you are reading this poem listening for something...

    http://grooveshark.com/ ...(continue)

    I know you are reading this poem which is not in your language
    guessing at some words while others keep you reading
    and I want to know which words they are.
    I know you are reading this poem listening for something...

    http://grooveshark.com/#!/s/Let+Me+Try/4P78Sn?src=5

    Is this helpful?

    sofja said on Dec 23, 2012 | Add your feedback

Book Details

  • Rating:
    (4)
    • 5 stars
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  • English Books
  • Paperback 70 Pages
  • ISBN-10: 0393308316
  • ISBN-13: 9780393308310
  • Publisher: WW Norton & Co
  • Publish date: 1992-01-15
  • Dimensions: 52 mm x 896 mm x 1,347 mm
  • Also available as: Hardcover
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