Beacon Press: Swan
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Poems and Prose Poems

Author: Mary Oliver

From one of America’s leading poets, a breath-taking collection of new poems

“Joy is not made to be a crumb,” writes Mary Oliver, and certainly joy abounds in her new book of poetry and prose poems. Swan, her twentieth volume, shows us that, though we may be “made out of the dust of stars,” we are of the world she captures here so vividly: the acorn that hides within it an entire tree; the wings of the swan like the stretching light of the river; the frogs singing in the shallows; the mockingbird dancing in air. Swan is Oliver’s tribute to “the mortal way” of desiring and living in the world, to which the poet is renowned for having always been “totally loyal.”

As the Los Angeles Times noted, innumerable readers go to Oliver’s poetry “for solace, regeneration and inspiration.” Few poets express the immense complexities of human experience as skillfully, or capture so memorably the smallest nuances. Speaking, for example, of stones, she writes, “the little ones you can / hold in your hands, their heartbeats / so secret, so hidden it may take years / before, finally, you hear them.” It is no wonder Oliver ranks, according to the Weekly Standard, “among the finest poets the English language has ever produced.“
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“Mary Oliver moves by instinct, faith, and determination. She is among our finest poets, and still growing.” —Alicia Ostriker, The Nation

“Mary Oliver’s poetry is fine and deep; it reads like a blessing. Her special gift is to connect us with our sources in the natural world, its beauties and terrors and mysteries and consolations.” —Stanley Kunitz

“One would have to reach back perhaps to [John] Clare or [Christopher] Smart to safely cite a parallel to Oliver’s lyricism.” —David Barber, Poetry

“The music in Oliver’s writing is unmistakable. Her poetry can be read as the best of the real lyrics we have these days, and it’s no surprise that she’s already won a Pulitzer Prize for it, as well as many other honors.” —Los Angeles Times


Review: Ms. Magazine - October 26, 2010
With her new collection, this winner of the National Book Award for Poetry and the Pulitzer Prize in Poetry once again joyfully celebrates the natural world.
Review: Christian Century - October 19, 2010
“You can pick up pretty much any Mary Oliver collection and be thrilled, but Swan…is so piercing and penetrating that form seems to fall away, an unnecessary stage for the rocket.”
Review by: Donna Seaman, Booklist - September 1, 2010
“Oliver’s plainspoken yet ringing poems are testimony to joy, prayers, and sermons."

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ISBN: 978-080706899-1
Publication Date: 9/14/2010
Size: x Inches (US)
Price:  $25.00
Format: Cloth
Availability: In stock.
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