Averno is a small crater lake in southern Italy, regarded by the ancient Romans as the entrance to the underworld. That place gives its name to Louise Gl ck's tenth collection: in a landscape turned irretrievably to winter, it is a gate or passageway that invites traffic between worlds while at the same time resisting their reconciliation. Averno is an extended lamentation, its long, restless poems no less spellbinding for being without conventional resoltution or consolation, no less ravishing for being savage, grief-stricken. What Averno provides is not a map to a point of arrival or departure, but a diagram of where we are, the harrowing, enduring present.Averno is a 2006 National Book Award Finalist for Poetry.
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About the Author
Louise Glück has won the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the Bollingen Prize, and is the former Poet Laureate of the United States. She teaches at Yale University and lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
"Brilliant [poems of] complex, haunting power . . . Averno may be Glück's masterpiece. Certainly it demonstrates that she is writing at the peak of her powers." --Nicholas Christopher, The New York Times Book Review
"Few poets can shoulder the weight of myth the way Glück does . . . The poems brilliantly display a poet's insight, a mother's warmth, and a mortal's empathy. There is wry humor, too, and, amid much that is dark, there are fragments of hope." --The New Yorker