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The House on the Marshland

3.93 of 5 stars 3.93  ·  rating details  ·  121 ratings  ·  12 reviews
Paperback, 48 pages
Published June 1st 1976 by Anvil Press Poetry
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The collection is broken into two part: "All Hallows" and "The Apple Trees"

The poems of "All Hallows" are predominantly about childhood and mythology. The poems about childhood can be divided into childhood generally (poems such as "The Pond" and "The School Children") and the poet's childhood specifically (poems such as "For My Mother" and "Still Life").

The hills are far away. They rise up
blacker than childhood.
- The Pond

How orderly they are - the nails
on which the children hang
their overcoat
I first encountered this book of poetry in the mid-70s, and some of the poems have stayed with me ever since. Perhaps most of all, "Gretel in Darkness," which begins:

"This is the world we wanted.
All who would have seen us dead
are dead. I hear the witch's cry
break in the moonlight through a sheet
of sugar: God rewards.
Her tongue shrivels into gas . . ."

Wow. This woman really knew how to do it.
Oh, Louise. "Instruct me in the dark." This is a book about compression, about the physics of emotion. Unflinching. Possessed. More a live animal than a book of poems, this is one of my top ten books, regardless of genre.
Purchased for "Gretel in Darkness," discovered in a student compendium.

Also enjoyed: All Hallows, The Undertaking, The Letters, and a few others, like The Swimmer.

Sometimes in Gluck I encounter a sort of small, everyday rapture: her language is as simple and shocking as ice. Not a glacial melt: just a woman and her warm, human hands holding ice she makes to melt. Gluck is a woman who keeps time with ice cubes, marking an afternoon's flood into night.

"It is night for the last time.
For the last t
Mike Jensen
The author said this is better than her first book, and it is. I respect it more than I like it, however. I find these poems uninvolving and unmoving. There is also the curious habit of using a word that seem inappropriate, such as in "Even now the landscape is assembling." Assembling? I could understand this if the sun was rising, but it seems to setting, if I interpret the next line correctly. I recently read an article that praised Gluck for doing this. Now, having read two of her books, the ...more
Reread for the third time.
I didn't find much in this. I enjoyed it more than her first volume, but not by much. Nothing sprang out at me, ached for me to accept it and take it as my own.
I like the direct clear voice of these poems, and when I first read this slim collection I liked it so much that I have carried it with me for 25 years. But...I never felt enough to revisit the poems. Now I have reread, and now the volume is perched atop the sell or give away pile.
Derek Emerson
My journey through Gluck's works continue to impress me. This short collection has many poems which call you back for a closer rereading. Her simple and direct language challenge you as you can tell more is required from you involvement. An excellent collection.
Oct 09, 2012 Lindsey rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Lindsey by: Marianne
Favorites: "All Hallows," "Gretel in Darkness," "To Autumn," "Gratitude," "Gemini," and "The Undertaking"
enjoyable. love her style. some of her pieces i can do without, but some are just so incredible. worth it.
Favourite poems: Gretel in Darkness; The Fire; Gratitude.
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Glück was born in New York City of Hungarian Jewish heritage and grew up on Long Island. Glück attended Sarah Lawrence College and later Columbia University.

Glück is the author of twelve books of poetry, including: "A Village Life" (2009); Averno (2006), which was a finalist for The National Book Award; The Seven Ages (2001); Vita Nova (1999), which was awarded The New Yorker's Book Award in Poetr
More about Louise Glück...
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