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Widely regarded as the “rock star” of American poetry, Mary Oliver is a writer whose words have long had the power to move countless readers. Regularly topping the national poetry best-seller list and drawing thousands to her sold-out readings across the country, Oliver is unparalleled in her impact. As noted in the Los Angeles Times, so many “go to her for solace, regeneration and inspiration” that it is not surprising Vice President Joe Biden chose to read one of her poems during the 9/11 remembrance at Ground Zero. Few poets express the complexities of human experience as skillfully as Mary Oliver.
This volume, Oliver’s twenty-first book of poetry, contains all new poems on her classic themes. Here, readers will find the deep spiritual sustenance that imbues her writing on nature, love, mortality, and grief. As always, Oliver is an accomplished guide to the rarest and most exquisite insights of the natural world. Ranking “among the finest poets the English language has ever produced,” according to the Weekly Standard, Oliver offers us lyrics of great depth and beauty that continue her lifelong work of loving the world.
Praise for Mary Oliver
“She is, far and away, this country’s best selling poet.” –Dwight Garner, New York Times Book Review
“One of the astonishing aspects of Oliver’s work is the consistency of tone over this long period [of her career]. What changes is an increased focus on nature and an increased precision with language that has made her one of our very best poets. . . . Although few poets have fewer human beings in their poems than Mary Oliver, it is ironic that few poets also go so far to help us forward.”–Stephen Dobyns, New York Times Book Review
“Mary Oliver’s poetry is fine and deep; it reads like a blessing. Her special gift is to connect us with our sources in the natural world, its beauties and terrors and mysteries and consolations.”–Stanley Kunitz
“Mary Oliver’s poems are natural growths out of a loam of perception and feeling, and instinctive skill with language makes them seem effortless. Reading them is a sensual delight.”–May Swenson
“I should be clear that Mary Oliver is, to my mind, one of the most gifted American poets working in English today. In her hands, the language acquires a lucidity approaching translucence; the accuracy of her vision and the precision of her voice are unique in their refreshing simplicity. Perhaps most singular is the tendency of her poems to be at once powerful and appealing; an affection for the natural world and a sympathy toward the reader abide.” –Katherine Hollander, Pleiades
“One would have to reach back perhaps to [John] Clare or [Christopher] Smart to safely cite a parallel to Oliver’s lyricism.”–David Barber, Poetry