Come Closer and Listen: New Poems

Charles Simic. HarperCollins, $24.99 (96p) ISBN 978-0-06-290846-9
Pulitzer-winner Simic (The Lunatic) has mastered a deceptively simple and straightforward lyric style that has served him well over two dozen books of poetry. His latest is no different in this regard, noting (and plucking) “the cunning threads/ By which our lives are rigged.” Simic’s world is a quiet one, though its quietness is haunted with echoes of wars, scams, loves had and lost, and a wry smile that seems to know the score no matter how dark the world gets. “They say Death/ Hid his face in his hood/ So he could smile too,” Simic writes, “I like the black keys better/ I like the lights turned down low/ I like women who drink alone/ While I hunch over the piano/ Looking for all the pretty notes.” These poems are often slyly funny, emotionally generous, and wrapped up in the lives of the people they depict—children at play, men and women in private moments, mythical figures and deities outside their myths. Some of the new poems, such as “The American Dream,” arrive as premade classics, evoking times past in a stilted, twilit present and reminding readers of Simic’s keen eye for the restless, the absurd, and the enduringly human. (July)
Reviewed on : 06/13/2019
Release date: 07/02/2019
Genre: Poetry
Ebook - 96 pages - 978-0-06-290848-3
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