Fifty Years of American Poetry

Copyright 1984
Checked out 13 times in 26 years
Last checked out 7 years ago

When I first saw this volume, with so many poets I hadn’t read, I was excited about exploring it. Alas, I’m discovering that there may have been a good reason that the names and poetry of some of these people didn’t endure. And the chosen poems for this volume by poets whose work I’ve enjoyed were not their best. Still, there’s plenty of worthwhile poetry in this book: Robinson Jeffer’s “Hurt Hawks,” Robert Lowell’s “For the Union Dead,” and John Berryman is represented by “Dream Song #48.” I’m about half way through the book and I see that not far ahead is one of my favorite poems: Galway Kinnell’s “St. Francis and the Sow.” So I’ve been a little disappointed but not enough to discourage me from reading every poem. I would recommend repairing the failing binding (inside front cover) and keeping this another ten years. If the interest continues to flag, as it seems to be, then let it go. I suspect there are better anthologies of American poetry on the shelves.

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About jppoetryreader

Poetry reviewer and poetry consultant for libraries
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