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The Undertaker's Daughter

3.84  ·  Rating Details  ·  62 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
“Poems that stick with you like a song that won’t stop repeating itself in your brain, poems whose cadences burrow into your bloodstream, orchestrating your breathing long before their sense attaches its hooks to your heart.”
—Washington Post on Captivity
Paperback, 104 pages
Published October 24th 2011 by University of Pittsburgh Press (first published January 1st 2011)
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Feb 14, 2012 Leonard rated it it was amazing
I didn't particularly like a few of the poems in here, especially the ones about Telly, the poet's fish which perhaps were intended it be a kind of release from the more serious poetry that precedes and follows them.

But there are very worthwhile poems in here, many of them written in prose, poems about suffering, about the misue of power, and about surviving. Here are a few examples.

"Many abused children never love again, never trust. Their hands pass it down to their children. The body holds me
Dec 30, 2015 Milo rated it really liked it
"Is it possible to change everything that has happened by looking at the past in a different way? Not denying anything but, perhaps, inserting some detail that pries open the heart so that more light floods out of it?"
- from "The undertaking"
Jan 17, 2016 Nancy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry
Like you are there. Toi gives us the complicated blooming truth. I keep feeling my hair being pulled up so that I stand up.
Jan 03, 2014 Naomi rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
Tough and tender poems about family violence and resistance and the choices we make and have. Autobiographical poetry; may be healing and may also be a trigger for those who have experienced domestic violence. Fine work, and looking forward to more.
Jul 24, 2012 Martha rated it really liked it
I had the privilege of hearing this talented poet read/sing her poetry last fall. This is a very good book, which I may have appreciated mor because I also have father issues...I especially love the last poem in the book, a poem about poetry.
Katharine Holden
Apr 27, 2012 Katharine Holden rated it did not like it
Ugly stuff that seems more like memories jotted down for a therapist than poetry.
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Toi Derricotte is the author of The Undertaker’s Daughter (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2011) and four earlier collections of poetry, including Tender, winner of the 1998 Paterson Poetry Prize. Her literary memoir, The Black Notebooks (W.W. Norton), received the 1998 Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for Non-Fiction and was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. Her honors include, among many other ...more
More about Toi Derricotte...

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