Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Memoir of the Hawk” as Want to Read:
Memoir of the Hawk
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Memoir of the Hawk

4.17  ·  Rating Details ·  250 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews
Memoir of the Hawk creates a world populated by hundreds of characters, believable and strange, tugged at the edges by the unexpected. In the privacy of their homes, who can save them from themselves? In the forests and hills and on the beautiful lakes, what could possibly be wrong? Even in the sweet hometown, with its kindly police, menace lurks in a thousand disguises. M ...more
Paperback, 192 pages
Published July 30th 2002 by Ecco (first published 2001)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Memoir of the Hawk, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Memoir of the Hawk

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Eryk
Oct 11, 2010 Eryk rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Lovers of Russel Edson, Charles Simic
Recommended to Eryk by: Just a random search at a used bookstore
Ideally, for me, at least, this book--along with his others--would be better read at the rate of one poem per day. Even the shortest Tate piece is immense and needs time to settle in. But with one poem per page in this 175 page book, I'd never be able to contain myself to only one a day. So, instead, I did the next best thing: read it in two days! This is a magnificent offering from Tate. The poems here are perhaps a bit shorter than those in some of his other books. Not a bad thing, by any mean ...more
Tony
Feb 12, 2008 Tony rated it really liked it
James Tate is one strange dude. His poems are peculiarly surreal, or magic realist, or merely absurd, and they seek out a place where humor meets dream. Check out this one:


New Blood

A huge lizard was discovered drinking
out of the fountain today. It was not menacing
anyone, it was just very thirsty. A small crowd
gathered and whispered to one another, as though
the lizard would understand them if they spoke
in normal voices. The lizard seemed not even
a little perturbed by their gathering. It drank
and
...more
Doc
Apr 11, 2015 Doc rated it it was amazing
Funny, thoughtful, even insightful snippets of situations but read more as flash fiction miniatures than as poems. If this is what contemporary verse has become, then it is high time for the pendulum to swing back to more formal and disciplined modes. Oh, it is entertaining and worthwhile, but Mr. Tate is not only playing without the net but has eschewed the ball and racquet, and if you were expecting a tennis match, you got instead interpretive dance.
Jan
May 07, 2013 Jan rated it it was ok
Recommended to Jan by: Christian W.
Shelves: poetry
Clever, sort of like Frank O'Hara, who isn't my cup of tea, either. The poems were written in verse, but with seemingly arbitrary line breaks, and they felt more like prose poems because of their surreal and absurd quality. The next morning, any magazine I picked up reminded me of Memoir of the Hawk, so I guess Tate succeeded in pointing out the absurdity of everyday life.
Darren
Oct 23, 2007 Darren rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: my imaginary others
Tate has a wonderful way of surprising. His poems are simple, for a while, but the epiphanies toward the end among the everyday events and relationships he concocts leave the reader with a sense of the surreal, of the fantastic...
Sharma
Jul 07, 2011 Sharma rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry
I've been re-reading this collection of late and it kicks a severe amount of ass. Hilarious, eyebrow-raising, lyrical, completely paradoxical. Highly recommend to anyone wanting to read mind-blowing poetry.
Reacher
Jul 28, 2014 Reacher rated it liked it
with roughly 170 poems in this book, there are inevitably going to be some duds along with great poems, and that's surely the case here. one wonders if the collection would have been made stronger through more judicious selection.
Susan
Mar 14, 2012 Susan rated it liked it
Shelves: poetry
Tate can be very, very funny and I enjoyed a lot of the poems but I also tired of the wryness after a while. (Witness how long it took me to get through this book--almost a month!)
Stephenbailey7
Dec 22, 2008 Stephenbailey7 rated it it was amazing
A very funny and accessible collection of prose. I recommend this to anyone who is looking for poetry with mass appeal.
Lindsay Daigle
Lindsay Daigle rated it really liked it
Sep 01, 2014
Gabriel
Gabriel rated it really liked it
Jul 13, 2007
Noah
Noah rated it liked it
Nov 11, 2007
Cole
Nov 28, 2007 Cole rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: sturdy americans
one of the best gifts i have ever received. thank you leroy.
Robert Stewart
Robert Stewart rated it really liked it
Dec 27, 2009
Riba
Riba rated it it was amazing
May 07, 2008
Patrick Duggan
Patrick Duggan rated it really liked it
Jul 13, 2007
Shad
Shad rated it really liked it
Mar 20, 2008
Jess
Jess rated it did not like it
Nov 04, 2008
Pat Beck
Pat Beck rated it really liked it
Dec 14, 2010
Leora
Leora rated it it was amazing
Feb 01, 2013
Arni Adler
Arni Adler rated it it was amazing
Feb 13, 2013
Sora
Sora rated it it was amazing
Aug 01, 2015
Caroline
Caroline rated it really liked it
Sep 23, 2007
Amber
Amber rated it liked it
Feb 22, 2010
Liam
Liam rated it it was amazing
May 22, 2012
 john
john rated it really liked it
Aug 14, 2016
Caroline-manring
Caroline-manring rated it really liked it
Nov 11, 2007
Craig Morgan Teicher
Craig Morgan Teicher rated it really liked it
Dec 15, 2007
Chris Bazzle
Chris Bazzle rated it it was amazing
Mar 12, 2015
Justine Morrow
Justine Morrow rated it liked it
Jul 01, 2015
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Tunnel: Selected Poems
  • Nice Hat. Thanks.
  • The Beforelife
  • Elegy On Toy Piano
  • Imperfect Thirst
  • Bad Bad
  • The Splinter Factory
  • What Is Amazing
  • The Complete Nonsense of Edward Lear
  • The Man Suit
  • Middle Earth: Poems
  • Search Party: Collected Poems
  • With Deer
  • The Lichtenberg Figures
  • Beauty Was the Case That They Gave Me
  • Adam Robison and Other Poems
39154
James Vincent Tate was born in Kansas City, Missouri. He has taught creative writing at the University of California, Berkeley and Columbia University, and currently teaches at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where he has worked since 1971. He is a member of the poetry faculty at the MFA Program for Poets & Writers, along with Dara Wier and Peter Gizzi.

Dudley Fitts selected Tate's fi
...more
More about James Tate...

Share This Book