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This title in other editions

Scar Tissue

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Scar Tissue Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Hard to imagine that no one counts,

that only things endure.

Unlike the seasons, our shirts don't shed,

Whatever we see does not see us,

however hard we look,

The rain in its silver earrings against the oak trunks,

The rain in its second skin.

--from "Scar Tissue II"

In his new collection, the Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Charles Wright investigates the tenuous relationship between description and actuality--"thing is not an image"--but also reaffirms the project of attempting to describe, to capture the natural world and the beings in it, although he reminds us that landscape is not his subject matter but his technique: that language was always his subject--language and "the ghost of god." And in the dolomites, the clouds, stars, wind, and water that populate these poems, "something un-ordinary persists."

 
Scar Tissue is a groundbreaking work from a poet who "illuminates and exalts the entire astonishing spectrum of existence" (Booklist).

Charles Wright, winner of the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the National Book Award, teaches at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.
In his new collection, the Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Charles Wright investigates the tenuous relationship between description and actuality—"A thing is not an image"—but also reaffirms the project of attempting to describe, to capture the natural world and the beings in it. He reminds us that landscape is not his subject matter but his technique: that language was always his subject—language and the ghost of God. And in the dolomites, the clouds, stars, wind, and water that populate these poems, "Something unordinary persists."

 

Scar Tissue is a groundbreaking work from a poet who "illuminates and exalts in the entire astonishing spectrum of existence" (Booklist).

"Charles Wright offers slews of . . . indescribable moments, instances in which the reader feels she has been closely studied and included in the work, as if the poet were clairvoyant. The result is an intoxicating combination of déjà vu, jealousy, exhilaration and joy, the poetic equivalent of a runner's high . . . Poets such as Hart Crane, Emily Dickinson and Wright's beloved Pound, though stylistically different, would inhabit a similar plane of vigor, distinctiveness and skill . . . What a delight."—Jenna Krajeski, San Francisco Chronicle

 
"A restless spirituality haunts this latest outing from Pulitzer Prize winner Wright (Black Zodiac), a collection of meditations that question 'the Heracletian backwash' of memory, the relative significance (if any) of human presence in the universe, and our Romantic nostalgia for the sunlit and moonlit landscapes that 'ignite us into a false love for the physical world.' It's not the world itself, Wright hints, but our imaginative recasting of it, in language or in art, that inspires us. Though his poems evoke an aura of Zen calm, a fascination with paradox and ambiguity suggesting a perspective poised just outside of time, they are Western at the core, proactive, willing to be distracted, unsatisfied with their own open-ended conclusions. If the spirit 'is looking for somewhere to dissipate,' its search may well be ceaseless. A 'God-fearing agnostic,' Wright recognizes our 'desperation for unknown things, a thirst/ For endlessness that snakes through our bones . . .' Though Wright's longtime readers will find familiar territory here, they may also detect a sharper tone, as the poet, now 70, confronts mortality with renewed urgency."—Library Journal
 
"The phrasemaking lyricism of this 17th volume plays to Wright's familiar strengths: 42 long-lined poems mix calm, Taoist-inflected wisdom with lush descriptions of landscapes in Italy, North Carolina (where he grew up) and Virginia's Blue Ridge country (where he now lives). 'There is no end to the other world,' Wright announces, 'no matter where it is,' and that other world shimmers and glows amid this one: 'Wet days are their own reward for now, / litter's lapse and the pebble's gleam.' Wright sounds by turns learned and folksy: Chinese classical poets continue to give Wright models and precedents, while Kafka's parable of the hunter Gracchus (who travels the world in his coffin) provides a darker undertone. Ischia, Rome and Florence compete with southern roads in Wright's scenery, where 'Whatever is insignificant has its own strength.' The title sequence concentrates on nostalgia, 'Lost loves and the love of loss,' trying to find a deeper appreciation both of the historical past and of the poet's childhood memories. Wright makes a slight departure from his recent books in the valedictory, even triumphant, feel of this one: long content to chronicle flux and presence, Wright looks these days to the future, in which the world and its beauty outlast us."—Publishers Weekly 

Review:

"The phrasemaking lyricism of this 17th volume plays to Wright's familiar strengths: 42 long-lined poems mix calm, Taoist-inflected wisdom with lush descriptions of landscapes in Italy, North Carolina (where he grew up) and Virginia's Blue Ridge country (where he now lives). 'There is no end to the other world,' Wright announces, 'no matter where it is,' and that other world shimmers and glows amid this one: 'Wet days are their own reward for now,/ litter's lapse and the pebble's gleam.' Wright sounds by turns learned and folksy: Chinese classical poets continue to give Wright models and precedents, while Kafka's parable of the hunter Gracchus (who travels the world in his coffin) provides a darker undertone. Ischia, Rome and Florence compete with southern roads in Wright's scenery, where 'Whatever is insignificant has its own strength.' The title sequence concentrates on nostalgia, 'Lost loves and the love of loss,' trying to find a deeper appreciation both of the historical past and of the poet's childhood memories. Wright makes a slight departure from his recent books in the valedictory, even triumphant, feel of this one: long content to chronicle flux and presence, Wright looks these days to the future, in which the world and its beauty outlast us." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Synopsis:

In Scar Tissue, the Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Charles Wright not only investigates the tenuous relationship between description and actuality--"A thing is not an image"--but also reaffirms the project of attempting to describe, to capture the natural world and the beings in it, although he reminds us that landscape is not his subject matter but his technique: that language was always his subject--language and "the ghost of god." And in the dolomites, the clouds, stars, wind, and water that populate these poems, "something un-ordinary persists."

Scar Tissue is a groundbreaking work from a poet who "illuminates and exalts in the entire astonishing spectrum of existence" (Booklist).

About the Author

Charles Wright, winner of the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the National Book Award, teaches at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780374254278
Subtitle:
Poems
Author:
Wright, Charles
Publisher:
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Subject:
General
Subject:
American - General
Subject:
General Poetry
Subject:
Poetry-A to Z
Subject:
Single Author / American
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20070724
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Notes
Pages:
88
Dimensions:
8.55 x 5.82 x 0.52 in

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Poetry » A to Z

Scar Tissue New Hardcover
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Product details 88 pages Farrar Straus Giroux - English 9780374254278 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "The phrasemaking lyricism of this 17th volume plays to Wright's familiar strengths: 42 long-lined poems mix calm, Taoist-inflected wisdom with lush descriptions of landscapes in Italy, North Carolina (where he grew up) and Virginia's Blue Ridge country (where he now lives). 'There is no end to the other world,' Wright announces, 'no matter where it is,' and that other world shimmers and glows amid this one: 'Wet days are their own reward for now,/ litter's lapse and the pebble's gleam.' Wright sounds by turns learned and folksy: Chinese classical poets continue to give Wright models and precedents, while Kafka's parable of the hunter Gracchus (who travels the world in his coffin) provides a darker undertone. Ischia, Rome and Florence compete with southern roads in Wright's scenery, where 'Whatever is insignificant has its own strength.' The title sequence concentrates on nostalgia, 'Lost loves and the love of loss,' trying to find a deeper appreciation both of the historical past and of the poet's childhood memories. Wright makes a slight departure from his recent books in the valedictory, even triumphant, feel of this one: long content to chronicle flux and presence, Wright looks these days to the future, in which the world and its beauty outlast us." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Synopsis" by ,
In Scar Tissue, the Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Charles Wright not only investigates the tenuous relationship between description and actuality--"A thing is not an image"--but also reaffirms the project of attempting to describe, to capture the natural world and the beings in it, although he reminds us that landscape is not his subject matter but his technique: that language was always his subject--language and "the ghost of god." And in the dolomites, the clouds, stars, wind, and water that populate these poems, "something un-ordinary persists."

Scar Tissue is a groundbreaking work from a poet who "illuminates and exalts in the entire astonishing spectrum of existence" (Booklist).

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