River House: Poems

Product Details
$16.00  $14.88
Milkweed Editions
Publish Date
5.9 X 7.8 X 0.4 inches | 0.2 pounds

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About the Author
Sally Keith is the author of three previous collections of poetry. Her first, Design was the winner of the 2000 Colorado Prize selected by Allen Grossman. In 2004, Dwelling Son was selected by Fanny Howe for the Contemporary Poetry Series. Most recently she released The Fact of the Matter. A graduate of the Iowa Writer's Workshop and winner of numerous awards and fellowships, Keith is currently a member of the MFA Faculty at George Mason University and lives in Washington, D.C.
"No poet of her generation braids passion with intellect more impressively than Sally Keith. And in River House, Keith carries her talent to a whole new level. An elegy for the poet's mother, River House is also an investigation of how we give our lives meaning and shape. At turns gorgeous, wry, and heartbreaking, these poems render the individual soul with a disarming immediacy. To read Sally Keith's River House is to feel grief and bewilderment verging into sheer wonder."
--Peter Campion

"River because we are moving inexorably forward; house because we are locked forever to the past. Preternaturally calm even as they twist and turn against themselves, the sixty-three poems of River House feel as if they're happening in the time it takes to read them, except that when you're finished with River House, your dream comes true: you can read the poems again. I do not know of a book of poems that embodies more heartbreakingly or more intelligently the experience of irreconcilable loss."
--James Longenbach

"'What kind of metamorphosis is death: beautiful or utilitarian?' What the mourner learns about the end of the world is that you have to keep on living. We learn by doing; River House is a book of spiritual exercises that seem at first to require no belief but attention. Only at the end of Sally Keith's extraordinary collection do we realize what's here to be believed in isn't experience, but beauty itself, the human work of reading and looking and loving, anything that stops in our tracks, anything that asks us to rush to its side. The poems focus the reader with a hunger so intelligent, so real, and so immediate, you forget you're reading a poem, and simply remember there's something vital you must do. It's like looking at the moon while watching the stars disappear: don't you look harder? These poems are clear and strange. They illuminate without consolation. The world has ended many times in our contemporary literary landscape, but rarely has it started over with such agility, economy and elegance."
--Katie Peterson

"Heartbreaking and robust . . . Keith's poems possess a quiet music, and their intricate scatters of thought bear witness to the intimate struggles of mourning."--Publishers Weekly STARRED Review