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Next to Nothing: Collected Poems, 1926-1977

3.46  ·  Rating Details ·  26 Ratings  ·  1 Review
This slim volume collects Bowles' poetry, from his earliest youthful Surrealist lyrics ("A dull pearl evening presses down flat over all the land . . ".) to the longer narrative title poem and several other brief lyrics from the seventies ("No voice could be enough, what with this and that, / and the hours falling faster").
Paperback, 77 pages
Published March 1st 1981 by Black Sparrow Press
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Drew
Nov 26, 2008 Drew rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
If you find Mary Oliver’s collection interesting, then you should also check out Next To Nothing: Collected Poems: 1926-1977 by Paul Bowles. Bowles is one of my top three writers (along with Camus and Steinbeck). My favorite poem from his collected poems is Nights. It was written in 1977 and is transcribed below:

There have been times, what with this and that,
when the whisper of words was not enough.
On some shelf of memory lies a misplaced summer,
one not stored away for later savoring.
Surely it e
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Paul Bowles grew up in New York, and attended college at the University of Virginia before traveling to Paris, where became a part of Gertrude Stein's literary and artistic circle. Following her advice, he took his first trip to Tangiers in 1931 with his friend, composer Aaron Copeland.

In 1938 he married author and playwright Jane Auer (see: Jane Bowles). He moved to Tangiers permanently in 1947,
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More about Paul Bowles...

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“Each Whining Thing (1929)

When stripèd snakes shall creep upon us
And the nervous screams of birds
Make silent all the fountains and the orchards and when these
Have caught upon the wing each wing
That flutters from the sky
Then shall I and then shall I
Rip out the smiles from garden walks
Transform the minnows into hawks
Tarantulas and bees
Then shall I and then shall I
Unmake each whining thing.”
4 likes
“Poem

Things will go on like this for
Ever. No
Thing shall shatter. No
Tree. No
Blade of grass shall be
There. No
Thing but
Blue rocks shall
Fill the valley where I
Sleep.
Things shall go on like this for
Ever.
Things shall be un
Broken.
No action shall shatter. No
Thing shall escape and no
Body shall shatter ideas and no
Being shall shatter. No
Tree. No
Blade of grass shall
Be present to
Witness the
Incident.

********

Everything shall be always thus. No
Thing shall be turned or moved.
Touched.
All shall forever be so.”
3 likes
More quotes…