The Great Ledge

Peter Davison, Author Alfred A. Knopf $9.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-679-72597-8
Davison's ( Praying Wrong ) is a moral poetry, the embodiment of unwavering ethical commitment. Accomplished and powerful, the poems in his ninth collection--primarily narratives, some lyrics--are equally distinguished by his confident, lucid voice. Relying on the physical world for inspiration, the author's imagery is tactile and vivid, conveying effectively pleasure derived from nature: when describing with yearning the virtues of a peach, he explains, ``I beseech you, peach, / clench me into the sweetness / of your reaches.'' However, Davison's vision of nature is a complex and even ominous one when he considers the casual destruction humans wreak on earth. Imagining life in some future time when the environment is even more ravaged, he is able to evoke it in a spirit of somber realism uniquely Davison's own: ``If dark and thickness close upon our lungs / . . . we'll mourn like doves, repeating as we grieve / how carbon kept us whole--and though the whole / world turned to coal, then chiefly live.'' (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 09/01/1989
Release date: 09/01/1989
Hardcover - 59 pages - 978-0-394-58069-2
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