13th out of 102 books — 22 voters
Wendell Berry's most formal poetic work to date is a sequence of traditional and classic meditations, spanning the years 1979 to 1985. Written in the solitude of his hillside study over seven years of Sabbaths, these are poems of deep spirituality, meshing the metaphysical and the natural worlds.
Paperback, 96 pages
Published September 1st 1987 by North Point Press
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"Another Sunday morning comes/And I resume the standing Sabbath of the woods" (1979/II). The poems in this collection are the product of Wendell Berry sitting down every Sabbath to contemplate and write about his life on the land his family has lived on for 3 generations. This is my favorite volume of Wendell Berry's poetry, one I return to often, but this is the first time I have read the whole book, cover to cover, without interruption. Doing so has given me a new appreciation for the individu...more
Poems can feel like conversations in a way novels never do, to me. This book was a life-improving-and-deepening conversation last summer. I stumbled upon it at the Point Reyes library and renewed it again and again, unwilling to let it leave my side. Wendell Berry's ideas on what is rest and what is work, what is nature and what is cultivation, where beauty can be found and how to love, fill me with gratitude and grounded hope.
I did appreciate Berry's beautiful imagery, however I found it grew burdensome after 50 pages of thick-description at his winding pace. It certainly evoked the feeling of walking through a quiet wood, alone, on a winter morning, and walking, and walking, and walking...
Wendell Berry is a conservationist, farmer, essayist, novelist, professor of English and poet. He was born August 5, 1934 in Henry County, Kentucky where he now lives on a farm. The New York Times has called Berry the "prophet of rural America."More about Wendell Berry...