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A Poet's Guide to Poetry
Mary Kinzie
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A Poet's Guide to Poetry

3.77 of 5 stars 3.77  ·  rating details  ·  104 ratings  ·  10 reviews
A Poet's Guide to Poetry brings Mary Kinzie's expertise as poet, critic, and director of the creative writing program at Northwestern University to bear in a comprehensive reference work for any writer wishing to better understand poetry. Detailing the formal concepts of poetry and methods of poetic analysis, she shows how the craft of writing can guide the art of reading ...more
Hardcover, 572 pages
Published April 30th 1999 by University Of Chicago Press (first published April 1999)
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Gabriel Oak
There's no question that Kinzie is brilliant, both as a poet and as a critic. And this is a helpful reference. Kinzie's sensitivity to and analysis of meter and rhythm are especially impressive. The book's strength is also its weakness, though. Kinzie is so taken with rhythm and meter that she shortchanges other aspects of poetry, devoting only a (relatively) brief chapter to trope. The book also defines its object narrowly--startlingly so, considering when it was written. Kinzie's interest in t ...more
I was reading this in Brothers K the other day, and when I looked over at the table next to me, I saw MARY KINZIE HERSELF.
Wavers between 2 and 3 stars.

Incredibly detailed and unnecessarily dense. About a third could be cut and it would still get the point across. Also, it would greatly benefit the book itself if this were an ebook, to readily cross reference terms or look up Kinzie's acerbic vocabulary.
This is an excellent technical manual to the reading and writing of poetry. Kinzie's book also includes a glossary of poetic terms and a very helpful annotated bibliography of books and essays on the subject of poetry for those interested in further exploration. I might add that the book also contains a selection of exercises for beginning and more advanced poets interested in perfecting their craft.
Celeste Rousselot
A Poet's Guide to Poetry, Second Edition is chock full of information about the craft of poetry, but it's not a book that I'll read straight-through. Instead it's a great resource, complete with samples, definitions, descriptions and lessons, which will remain, I imagine, on my reference shelf for years.
I have to get back to this book someday....I just couldn't finish it. But sometimes my focus changes. Books I can't read today are possible at a later date. So I'll get back to this

Or not.
Wow. I couldn't finish the whole book but this will be one of my primary poetry references in future studies. Very dense but is there anything this woman doesn't know?
This book is very technical and difficult to read. But, it is a fantastic reference book and a good read if broken up into sections.
Jun 21, 2010 John rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People interested in writing poetry or learning to read poetry like a writer.
A detailed book on the craft of poetry. Although the subject is difficult, the book is surprisingly easy to read.
Another college text that has morphed into pleasure reading after a decades rest on the shelf.
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