Poetry magazine (a post he assumed in 2003), Wiman is also a maker of careful, accomplished verse in his own right; "/>

Hard Night

Christian Wiman, Author, Christian Wilman, Author . Copper Canyon $14 (96p) ISBN 978-1-55659-220-1

Known as the active, controversial editor of Poetry magazine (a post he assumed in 2003), Wiman is also a maker of careful, accomplished verse in his own right; this sophomore effort shows his strengths in a West Coast tradition of clarity, brevity, short lines and direct statement, a tradition whose representatives include W.S. DiPiero, Thom Gunn and Yvor Winters. Some lyric works remember freighted moments: "Wish for something ," you said./ A shiver pricked your spine./ The falcon turned its head/ and locked its eyes on mine." Others focus on landscapes, bringing a terse intensity to each scene. A three-part elegy describes the poet's dying father; the best short poem in the book, "Reading Herodotus," gets exceptional weight from its authoritative argument. Most of the book consists of three longer poems. "Sweet Nothing" concerns an upstairs neighbor in San Francisco; "The Ice Storm" (no relation to the novel or film of that name) follows an elderly couple and their memories to the very end of their lives. As if to mock his own outlook, Wiman (The Long Home ) concludes with a disquieting 23-part poem called "Being Serious," an abbreviated verse-biography (from womb to afterlife) for a prematurely jaded, frequently frustrated man called Serious. (June)

Reviewed on: 05/30/2005
Release date: 01/01/2005
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.