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The Way It Is: New and Selected Poems

by

The Way It Is: New and Selected Poems Cover

 

Staff Pick

I think of William Stafford as part grandfather/part favorite college professor. Although he was neither to me, his poems have a quiet truth that I both admire and adore. I wish I could have heard him teach at Lewis and Clark College or read as Oregon's Poet Laureate, but I am left with poems on paper. And, so, I memorize them and recite them aloud on friends' answering machines, or carry one folded in my back pocket. The poems he wrote in the days leading up to his death in 1993 have an amazing awareness of human life that I try to carry with me every day. Despite violent times, William Stafford lived his life with great peace as a conscientious objector and as a poet. At this giant bookstore where I discover new books every day, I consider William Stafford my best find.
Recommended by Kate L., Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

William Stafford (1914-1993) was an earnest, perceptive, and often affecting American poet who filled his life and ours with poetry of challenge and consolation. The Way It Is: New and Selected Poems gathers unpublished works from his last year, including the poem he wrote the day he died, as well as an essential and wide-ranging selection of works from throughout his career. An editorial team including his son Kim Stafford, the poet Naomi Shihab Nye, and the poet, translator, and author Robert Bly collaborated on shaping this book of Stafford's pioneering career in modern poetry. The poems in The Way It Is encompass Stafford's rugged domesticity, the political edge of his irony, and his brave starings-off into emptiness.

William Stafford was born in Hutchinson, Kansas, in 1914. After the Second World War (to which he was a conscientious objector), he earned a Ph.D. at the newly created Iowa Writer's Workshop. A longtime lecturer, workshop leader, and advocate on behalf of younger writers and readers, Stafford taught English at Lewis and Clark College from 1956 to 1979. He was awarded the National Book Award in Poetry for Traveling through the Dark. The author of over fifty books, Stafford remains one of the most beloved and widely read poets in contemporary American letters. He died in Oregon, where he had formerly served as the state's poet laureate, in 1993.

William Stafford (1914-1993) was an earnest, perceptive, and often affecting American poet who filled his life and ours with poetry of challenge and consolation. The Way It Is: New and Selected Poems gathers unpublished works from his last year, including the poem he wrote the day he died, as well as an essential and wide-ranging selection of works from throughout his career. An editorial team including his son Kim Stafford, the poet Naomi Shihab Nye, and the poet, translator, and author Robert Bly collaborated on shaping this book of Stafford's pioneering career in modern poetry. The poems in The Way It Is encompass Stafford's rugged domesticity, the political edge of his irony, and his brave starings-off into emptiness.

"Stafford's quiet presence in the landscape of American poetry in my lifetime has been a kind of continuing reassurance whose values always seemed to me beyond question. Even those of us who have read him for years are almost certain to be surprised now, I think, and repeatedly surprised, at the range and freshness of his gift, its responsiveness to the small, the plain, the apparently usual. I think his work as a whole will go on surprising us, growing as we recognize it, bearing witness in plain language to the holiness of the heart's affections which he seemed never to doubt. [This book is] a treasure that he has left us."W.S. Merwin

"[Stafford] left behind a body of work that represents some of the finest poetry written during the second half of [the twentieth] century . . . The poems, which reveal many of Stafford's themeshis affinity for Native Americans, love of nature, protest of war, and concern about the dangers of technologyare subtle and powerful in tone, but imagery is paramount . . . Highly recommended."Library Journal

"This is a collection to savor and admire. The many contributors to this extraordinary endeavor have completed a task worthy of this much-loved poet."Harvard Review

Synopsis:

The former Poet Laureate of Oregon delivers a definitive collection of poems that reveal his affinity for Native Americans, concern about the dangers of technology, and the love of nature.

Synopsis:

William Stafford (1914-1993) was an earnest, perceptive, and often affecting American poet who filled his life and ours with poetry of challenge and consolation. The Way It Is: New and Selected Poems gathers unpublished works from his last year, including the poem he wrote the day he died, as well as an essential and wide-ranging selection of works from throughout his career. An editorial team including his son Kim Stafford, the poet Naomi Shihab Nye, and the poet, translator, and author Robert Bly collaborated on shaping this book of Stafford's pioneering career in modern poetry. The poems in The Way It Is encompass Stafford's rugged domesticity, the political edge of his irony, and his brave starings-off into emptiness.

About the Author

William Stafford was born in Hutchinson, Kansas, in 1914. After the Second World War (to which he was a conscientious objector), he earned a Ph.D. at the newly created Iowa Writer's Workshop. A longtime lecturer, workshop leader, and advocate on behalf of younger writers and readers, Stafford taught English at Lewis and Clark College from 1956 to 1979. He was awarded the National Book Award in Poetry for Traveling through the Dark. The author of over fifty books, Stafford remains one of the most beloved and widely read poets in contemporary American letters. He died in Oregon, where he had formerly served as the state's poet laureate, in 1993.

Product Details

ISBN:
9781555972844
Author:
Stafford, William
Publisher:
Graywolf Press
Location:
Saint Paul, Minn.
Subject:
American
Subject:
American - General
Subject:
Poetry (poetic works by one author)
Subject:
General Poetry
Subject:
Poetry-A to Z
Subject:
Single Author / American
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Paperback
Series Volume:
IMS-15
Publication Date:
19990331
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
268
Dimensions:
9.05 x 6.01 x 0.86 in

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Related Subjects


Fiction and Poetry » Poetry » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Poetry » Featured Titles
Fiction and Poetry » Poetry » Poetry Month Picks
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » General

The Way It Is: New and Selected Poems Used Trade Paper
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Product details 268 pages Graywolf Press - English 9781555972844 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

I think of William Stafford as part grandfather/part favorite college professor. Although he was neither to me, his poems have a quiet truth that I both admire and adore. I wish I could have heard him teach at Lewis and Clark College or read as Oregon's Poet Laureate, but I am left with poems on paper. And, so, I memorize them and recite them aloud on friends' answering machines, or carry one folded in my back pocket. The poems he wrote in the days leading up to his death in 1993 have an amazing awareness of human life that I try to carry with me every day. Despite violent times, William Stafford lived his life with great peace as a conscientious objector and as a poet. At this giant bookstore where I discover new books every day, I consider William Stafford my best find.

"Synopsis" by , The former Poet Laureate of Oregon delivers a definitive collection of poems that reveal his affinity for Native Americans, concern about the dangers of technology, and the love of nature.
"Synopsis" by ,
William Stafford (1914-1993) was an earnest, perceptive, and often affecting American poet who filled his life and ours with poetry of challenge and consolation. The Way It Is: New and Selected Poems gathers unpublished works from his last year, including the poem he wrote the day he died, as well as an essential and wide-ranging selection of works from throughout his career. An editorial team including his son Kim Stafford, the poet Naomi Shihab Nye, and the poet, translator, and author Robert Bly collaborated on shaping this book of Stafford's pioneering career in modern poetry. The poems in The Way It Is encompass Stafford's rugged domesticity, the political edge of his irony, and his brave starings-off into emptiness.

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