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Poet's Choice

3.98 of 5 stars 3.98  ·  rating details  ·  41 ratings  ·  7 reviews
When Robert Haas first took his post as U.S. Poet Laureate, he asked himself, "What can a poet laureate usefully do?" One of his answers was to bring back the popular nineteenth-century tradition of including poetry in our daily newspapers. "Poet's Choice," a nationally syndicated column appearing in twenty-five papers, has introduced a poem a week to readers across the co ...more
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published March 1st 1998 by Ecco
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A mixed bag, but that was kind of the point and the excitement. Loved the concept, though I didn't always find the explanations that insightful, but they did achieve a casual, conversational tone. Loved the essay on children's poems. I found a lot of great new poets through the book, which was what I was looking for.
This is a good anthology for random reading. I enjoy opening the book to a section, each is organized by a season of the year, and reading a few poems. The opportunity to find poets with whom I'm unfamiliar is just as much fun as the anticipation of encountering an old friend. Every time I wander into the book I come away with joy at having shared the spirit of poetry with one of the best poets. With the inclusion of incisive notes by Robert Hass, a former Poet Laureate, this is a welcome additi ...more
I would recommend this to anyone wanting to become more familiar with poetry.

While Robert Hass was Poet Laureate of the United States, he wrote a weekly newspaper column in which he highlighted various poets. Many of the poems are written for or relate to a certain time of year. Hass exposed the US to poetry in a way that had not been done for many years. I love his introductions to these poems. He is a kind and warm poetry-loving teacher. His voice speaks through his column and offers brief in
Sep 04, 2013 Adam rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: poetry
I enjoyed this collection of short columns on poetry enormously, savoring it bit by bit over the course of the last year or so. It's was so refreshing to be introduced to each poet with the short contextual material Hass provides. I wish there were more such books on poetry, and will definitely be reading the second volume collecting his poetry columns from the Washington Post.
I don't think this anthology is as good as Garrison Keillor's books, but it's worth a browse-through. Hass is even handed and includes poets from different time periods and cultures. My favorite quote is from William Carlos Williams: It is difficult/to get news from poems/yet men die miserably every day/for lack/of what is found there
I found several new favorite poems here. Also see A Poetry Home Repair Manual and How To Read a Poem and Start a Poetry Circle.
Wonderful overview of the wide world of poetry, but doesn't read quite as well as Edward Hirsch's subsequent volume.
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Robert Hass was born in San Francisco and lives in Berkeley, California, where he teaches at the University of California. He served as Poet Laureate of the United States from 1995 to 1997. A MacArthur Fellow and a two-time winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award, he has published poems, literary essays, and translations. He is married to the poet Brenda Hillman.
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