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  • The End of Desire
  • Written by Jill Bialosky
  • Format: eBook | ISBN: 9780307555939
  • Our Price: $11.99
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The End of Desire

Written by Jill BialoskyAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by Jill Bialosky


List Price: $11.99


On Sale: February 04, 2009
Pages: 88 | ISBN: 978-0-307-55593-9
Published by : Knopf Knopf
The End of Desire Cover

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Jill Bialosky's first collection of poems is an exceptional one--moving, very accomplished, marked by an unflinching realism and a sharply observant eye combined with great technical skill. Childhood and adolescence shattered by a father's death and the struggles of a mother to raise her daughters are among its concerns. The poems have a dignity and magic that are quite distinctive.

From the Trade Paperback edition.


When I was a child
I used to love to stare at lovers--
at couples kissing, a man looking
longingly into a woman's eyes,
a woman adoring back
and marvel over the possibilities of love.
Usually I was with my sister,
standing in a grocery line,
or outside a theater.
She would tug at my sleeve,
roll her eyes and banish me with her words:
"Stop staring! What's wrong with you!"
I did feel that something was wrong--
that I could be so content absorbing
the wave of her hair, the scent of perfume,
his strong fingers cupped around her shoulder.
It was the long, uninterurupted gaze I most preferred.
At the movies, I would draw into myself
as I watched on the big screen lovers kiss
and felt a stab of pain in the center of my stomach
travel through my body like a drug--
and for that brief time it was as though
I was the lover, the receiver of such rapt attention.
When the lights came on I carried the kiss
with me all through the rest of the late afternoon,
through the long walk home underneath the autumn arbors,
through the dull and tedious routine of dinner,
until I was alone in my bedroom and could replay
the scene in my mind without interuption.
I knew that as long as I was allowed to look,
to linger, to stare,
to become one with that spell that was so other,
to know and then to have--
that one day, my desire would end.

From the Trade Paperback edition.
Jill Bialosky

About Jill Bialosky

Jill Bialosky - The End of Desire

Photo © Marion Ettlinger

Jill Bialosky is the author of the poetry collections The End of Desire and Subterranean, and her poems have appeared in journals such as The Paris Review, American Poetry Review, The Kenyon Review, The New Yorker, and The Atlantic Monthly. She is also the author of two novels, House Under Snow and The Life Room, and is an editor at W. W. Norton. She lives in New York City.


"Quiet poems. Like whispers in a fierce forest. Bialosky has given us things we shall never be able to forget."
--Hayden Carruth

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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