The Tether: Poems
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About the Author
Carl Phillips is the author of four books of poems, including Pastoral and From the Devotions, a finalist for the National Book Award. He is an associate professor of English and of African and Afro-American Studies at Washington University in St. Louis.
"[Phillips writes] batter-my-heart provocations worthy of John Donne [that are] subdued to a still, mature reverence." --The New Yorker
"[These] poems have a rare sensuality, and they successfully marry a brooding and philosophical outlook with high lyricism and musicality." --Kate Moos, Ruminator Review
"The music here is an admittedly cerebral one, and the poems are enjoyable, like late James, as much for the length and intricacy of their twistings as for the actual content. . . . Much of [this content] is passionately flourished. Many poems concern desire, the ways it may be satisfied, deferred, or disappointed: 'The hunt-was good; the kill, / less so, as you'd said to / expect. I don't listen, always.' The metaphor of the hunt is one of Phillips's favorites, and he doesn't shy away from either the brutality or the tenderness it calls for. The empathy of Phillips's work, especially when set off against his remarkably austere language, is terrific and moving. The strength of these poems is their sinuosity of thought. In the best cases, that hard thought flowers into feeling and makes the poems memorable." --Kirkus Reviews