WHERE SHALL I WANDER
AUTHOR: JOHN ASHBERY
"America's greatest living poet." --Harold Bloom
"Ashbery is a national treasure." --New York Times Book Review
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
HE IS THE POET OF MORE THEN 20 BOOKS OF POETRY. HIS POETRY BOOK SELF-PORTRAIT IN A CONVEX MIRROR RECIVED THE PULITZER PRIZE FOR POETRY ALSO THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD AND THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD. HIS BOOK SOME TREES WAS SELECTED BY W.H. AUDEN FOR THE YALE YOUNGER POETS SERIES.
HE HAS WON MORE OR LESS ALMOST EVERY AWARD THAT CAN BE GIVEN TO A POET. HE WAS THE FIRST ENGLISH LANGUAGE POET TO WIN THE GRAND PRIX DE BIENNALES INTERNATIONALES DE POESIE (BRUSSELS) AWARD.
MY REVIEW AND THOUGHTS:
THERE IS NO DOUBT HOW AMAZING MR. ASHBERY'S BEAUTY FOR WORDS ARE. HE HAS HAD AN AMAZING RUN AS A TRUE ONE OF A KIND POET THAT IS MORE OR LESS A TRUE ICONIC LEGEND THAT STILL IS LIVING. SO MANY POETS DON'T GET THE FAME THEY DESERVE UNTIL THEY ARE DEAD BUT WITH MR. ASHBERY I THINK IT'S SAFE TO SAY HE IS A LIVING LEGEND IN THE POET WORD. HIS PAST BOOKS ARE SOME OF THE GREATEST WRITTEN POETRY AROUND.
THIS REVIEW IS FOR HIS NEWEST BOOK AND I HAVE TO SAY IT'S NOT HIS BEST, BUT WITH THAT SAID IT STILL IS AN AMAZING PIECE OF POETRY TO READ AND UNDERSTAND AND WATCH THE WORDS FLOW IN PEACE AND SOMETIMES CONFUSSION MAKING IT REAL AND DEEP AT THE SAME TIME. WHAT IS FUN ABOUT THIS BOOK IS THE WAY MR. ASHBERY TAKES WORDS AND PLAYS WITH THEM AND MIXES ODD IMAGES INSIDE THE READER TO WONDER WHAT REALLY WAS BEING SAID OR TRYING TO BE SAID OR IF ANYTHING REALLY WAS BEING SAID.
THE NEW HIGHER
You meant more than life to me.
I lived through
you not knowing, not knowing I was living.
I learned that you called for me. I came to where
you were living, up a stair.
There was no one there.
No one to appreciate me.
The legality of it
upset a chair. Many times to celebrate
we were called together and where
we had been there was nothing there,
nothing that is anywhere.
We passed obliquely,
leaving no stare.
When the sun was done muttering,
in an optimistic way, it was time to leave that there.
Blithely passing in and out of where,
at the tag on the overcoat near the window where
the outside crept away, I put aside the there and now.
Now it was time to stumble anew,
blacking out when time came in the window.
There was not much of it left.
I laughed and put my hands shyly
across your eyes. Can you see now?
Yes I can see
I am only in the where
where the blossoming stream takes off,
under your window.
Go presently you said.
Go from my window.
I am in love with your window I cannot undermine
it, I said.
THE WAY THIS BOOK IS FORMED AND LAID OUT FOR THE READER IS ODD IN SPOTS AND MIXES A SENSE OF SIMPLE POETRY AND ALSO MIXES IN SOME NARRATIVE TYPE POETRY THAT IS LIKE READING A SHORT STORY THEN A POEM. THE BOOK FLOWS PERFECT FOR THE READER IF THE READER PUSHES AWAY ALL THE OTHER BEAUTIFUL AND AMAZING POETRY THAT MR. ASHBERY HAS DONE IN THE PAST, BECAUSE THIS BOOK I FEEL IS TOTALLY DIFFERENT FROM HIS OTHER WORKS.
A is walking through the streets of B, frantic
for C's touch but secretly relived
not to have it. At Tamerlane
and East of Tamerlane, he pauses, judicious:
The cave thing hasn't been seen again,
schoolgirls are prattling, and the Easter rabbit
is charging down the street, under full sail
and a strong headwind.
Was ever anything
so delectable floated across the crescent moon's
transparent bay? Here shall we sit
and, dammit, talk about our trip
until the sky is again cold and gray.
Another's narrative supplants the crawling
Like all good things life tends to go on too long,
and when we smile
in mute annoyance, pauses for a moment.
Rains bathe the rainbow,
and the shape of night is an empty cylinder,
focused at us, urging its noncompliance
closer along the way we chose to go.
I FEEL THIS IS A GREAT READ AND A BOOK THAT SHOWCASES THE MANY DIFFERENT TALENTS THAT MR. ASHBERY HAS. THE BOOK WORKS IN IMAGES AND WORDS THAT MIX TO SHOWCASE A WILD RIDE IF YOU WILL INTO A TWISTED CONCEPT OF POEMS THAT MIGHT TAKE THE READER TO READ IT TWICE TO TRY AND UNDERSTAND CERTAIN IMAGES BEING SPOKEN ABOUT. I FEEL THIS BOOK HAS IN MY VIEWPOINT AT LEAST FOUR AMAZING POEMS THAT STAND OUT, THE WHOLE BOOK READS IN A POETRY FLOW THAT STICKS WITH THE READER THAT IS READING IT.
3 OUT OF 5