February 21, 2009

Imagist Poetry: An Anthology Edited by Bob Blaisdell

BOOK #: 12
CHALLENGES: 9 in 2009 (my selection for no overlaps)
RATING: Mmm...That's Good (3 stars)

This wonderful collection of poetry from the early 20th century's Imagism movement blew me away. And it only cost me $1.00 at a used book store.

Imagism was a pretty radical poetic movement characterized by the use of common speech, a minimal use of adjectives, and the presentation of the subject matter in a clear and precise image. This anthology contains both well-known poets and their masterpieces, as well as lesser-known poets.

While there were some poems that did not capture my heart (as is probably the case for anyone with any anthology of poetry) there were so many, many more that did. William Carlos Williams was probably my favorite of the more famous poets featured in the book, while Richard Aldington and F.S. Flint were my favorites among the lesser-known poets.

Here is one of my favorite poems featured in the book:
"The sky has given over
its bitterness.
Out of the dark change
all day long
rain falls and falls
as if it would never end.
Still the snow keeps its hold on the ground.
But water, water is seething
from a thousand runnels.
It collects swiftly,
dappled with black
cuts a way for itself
through green ice in the gutters.
Drop after drop it falls
from the withered grass stems
of the overhanging embankment."
-Spring Storm by William Carlos Williams


And, I wanted to share this poem with you as well. It is Cherry Robbers by D.H. Lawrence:
"Under the long, dark boughs, like jewels red
In the hair of an Eastern girl
Shine strings of crimson cherries, as if had bled
Blood-drops beneath each curl.

Under the glistening cherries, with folded wings
Three dead birds lie:
Pale-breasted throstles and a blackbird, robberlings
Stained with red dye.

Under the haystack a girl stands laughing at me,
With cherries hung round her ears-
Offering me her scarlet fruit: I will see
If she has any tears."

If you have an interest in Imagist Poetry, I recommend this collection, which has some of the best works of the movement in it.

6 comments:

  1. Such beautiful poetry! I love reading books, and i think i will get this one. I also just finished the Gargoyle, VERY beautiful love story. You should read it sometime! =]

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  2. I'm a fan of imagist poetry and it sounds like an excellent collection. Did it include poems by H.D.? She's one of my favourites.

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  3. Thanks for sharing. You know how I love poetry. I'm adding this to the TBR list.
    Have a Great Day, Rebecca :)

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  4. what a great find! looks like something for the wish list. Williams Carlos Williams had his own style!

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  5. Great selection for the 9 for '09 Challenge.

    I need to find this work for a present for a friend.

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