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Poet's Choice

4.11  ·  Rating Details ·  171 Ratings  ·  38 Reviews
Edward Hirsch began writing a column called "Poet’s Choice" in the Washington Post Book World in 2002. This book brings together those enormously popular columns, some of which have been revised and expanded, to present a minicourse in world poetry. Poet’s Choice includes the work of more than one hundred poets from ancient times to the present—among them Sappho, W. B. Yea
Hardcover, 432 pages
Published April 3rd 2006 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (first published 2006)
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(showing 1-30 of 443)
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Apr 17, 2011 Phil rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Edward Hirsch is too in love with poetry. His rapturous affection is evidenced by his overflowing, rather gushing praise of almost every single poet he showcases in his Choice.

The book runs overly long, and before the reader is over a quarter finished, the reader is lost in a plethora of names and titles and collections. It would have been better to pick a few poets and spend longer with them than to present a collection of extremely short introductions to a hundred or more poets.

I also found Hi
tex norman
Feb 27, 2012 tex norman rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone who cares or might like to care about poetry.
Shelves: poetry
This is, of course, a great way to take articles and create a book, without actually having to write a book from scratch. However, this is an important book and a great concept that al poets and writes should consider following.

Most of us underestimate, and undervalue poetry. In this book, Mr. Hirsch selects poems, quotes the poems [making this a sort of collection of his favorite poems] and commentary on why the poems are good, or important.

I am doing the same thing in my private writings, bu
Feb 08, 2010 Paula rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hirsch is honest about the choices he makes for why he included particular poets and poems in this book. He freely admits that his decisions were based on his own subjective preferences, and that doesn't bother me because I've never heard of the vast majority of the ones I read about--so I have plenty of reading material for the future.

Hirsch splits this book into two sections, one for non-American writers and the other for American writers. He clearly loves Pablo Neruda, who by far has the most
Jan 21, 2008 Debnance rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Once, poetry was a common part of everyday life. Robert Hass wants to bring poetry back into the lives of workaday men and women. During the time he spent as Poet Laureate of the US, Hass decided to read widely and write a weekly newspaper column about poetry. This book is a compilation of the columns Hass write during the two year term.

Hass focuses on new poetry, but now and then he tosses in an old favorite or two. New or old, the poems he shares with us, his readers, his everyday readers, are
Roger DeBlanck
Jan 28, 2012 Roger DeBlanck rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
Edward Hirsch expresses his deeply-honored love and respect for poetry. An award-winning poet himself, this book serves as an homage to the craft and language of poetry that produces great emotive responses in people. In his short, essay-like chapters, Hirsch provides acute commentary on hundreds of poets and poems featured throughout the book. He shows how they have impacted and guided the quest of his own poetic vision and verse, and helped him work to discover the world in all its pain and jo ...more
Stacy Mar
Sep 22, 2014 Stacy Mar rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I picked this book up several years ago and took my time reading. I dipped into it a little each day and was never disappointed.

I love the variety of poetry and authors in this book, many I enjoyed but would have never heard from otherwise.

Owning this book and reading an article or two per day allows you to easily make poetry a daily habit for you.

I hated to see the book come to an end!
Sherry Elmer
Dec 04, 2015 Sherry Elmer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: poetry lovers; anyone new to poetry

As Ed Hirsch says in his anthology, "the original meaning of the word anthology, which derives from the Greek, is 'flower gathering,' and these books compose a surprisingly diverse and colorful garden." Hirsch was speaking of Robert Pinsky's Favorite Poem anthologies, but his statement applies to his own anthology, as well. Poet's Choice is a well-chosen and enthusiastically-tended garden of poets and poetry, both American and international. Reading Poet's Choice, I was introduced to many poets
Jan 29, 2015 Ron rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Edward Hirsch has compiled brief (2-3 pages) details of some poets along with short parts of their work. He clearly loves poetry (to an extreme). I had hoped to read through this book and find some poets that I might be interested in reading more of the work. I'm not sure that I did.
Tyler Malone
Mr. Hirsch loves the snot out of poetry, and this book is a testament to that. Some of the poems, though, weren't to my liking, and I think he knew that going into POET'S CHOICE. Worth is to find out how to read poetry, I just wish some of the poems were, well, more enjoyable.
In this book, Ed Hirsch shares the work of poets who have impacted him over the years. The poets he covers are not meant to be an exhaustive study of all historical periods of poetry, but rather a far-reaching look at what Hirsch likes best. I suppose this is what I liked most and least about the book: by the end I felt that I knew the author quite well, but the majority of the chapters leaned towards poetic styles he liked (and that I wasn't always excited by). Some chapters really caught my at ...more
Apr 17, 2010 James rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry, anthology
A delightful anthology of world poetry, Edwar Hirsch's compilation is based on his column, "Poet's Choice". Divided into two parts, with the first part devoted to a chronologically-ordered selection of "international" poems that share emotions rich in the history of the far corners of the world. It is with a quote from Walt Whitman's "Crossing Brooklyn Ferry" that Hirsch refers to the Bard of American poetry to introduce the second part of the anthology. Here he focuses on the poets of our own s ...more
Aug 07, 2016 Maxine rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I appreciate the introduction to poets I've never read before and there are a few I'd like to follow up on.

I guess this started out as a newspaper column? I wish there was more thought into organizing these columns (I'm not sure which would be better, by theme or by style). As is, the collection was too disjointed for me to really stay interested. Mostly finished the book through sheer willpower.
Lynn Tait
Jun 10, 2016 Lynn Tait rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lee Razer
Dec 31, 2014 Lee Razer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
This collection of 130 newspaper columns that Hirsch wrote for the Washington Post, each briefly discussing the work of a poet or poets he admires, is like a treasure trove of bread crumbs which can lead the reader onto paths of interest throughout the poetic corpus. Hirsch's love of poetry is wide ranging and enthusiastic and it's hard to imagine anyone but the expert not finding introductions here to new and interesting poets, and more avenues down which to go exploring.
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Jul 26, 2009 Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
I loved this book of essays on poetry so much that I reread several of the essays. I'm not sure I'm ready to pass this one on yet.

Yes, this is a book of essays on poetry and, yes, I loved it so much more than the two horrible novels I attempted this week and, no, I don't care that probably no one else in the entire world or even in the entire book-loving world would read this book. I loved it.
Oct 24, 2008 Jana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
i took a year to read this book. It sat beside my bed and gave me a few pages a night to ponder. It is a way to "read a poem a day" which is an excellent idea and to have a wonderful writer tell you something about each poet or each theme. It includes a section on international poets and a section on American ones. I got to reading one of each on some nights. I will miss this nightly friend!
Oct 22, 2013 Brian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Enjoyed the book. Gave good advice on life & being able to live fully but also had works about what life is like when things go bad. But that is pretty much what I expect from poetry. Has a strong focus of life stages which I enjoyed as it gave insights from young to old & things in between. Highly recommend for those who enjoy poetry & especially poetry that is analyzed.
Apr 16, 2009 Richard rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've been reading this chapter by chapter since 2007, and just finished. I'll let it sit, and then start again. It's a crash course in poetry, written by a poet/journalist/teacher. It reacquaints you with old friends, and introduces the new. It's a boon to poets' royalties in that it had me buying books every other chapter.
Scott Ansley
May 14, 2014 Scott Ansley rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fantastic read. Hirsch writes beautifully while writing about beautiful writing. His incites into the history of the each of the poets and where they were writing during their masterpieces are extremely pleasurable to read. His ability to show the humanity in the heroes we read is lovely.
Mar 17, 2010 Sacha rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
I was expecting an anthology, but this is more a collection of (short) conversations about poetry. Edward Hirsch's thoughts never failed to enhance the poems he presented. His descriptions of poets were truly beautiful and specific. Thanks to this one, I've bought 3 other books... so far.
Niño Manaog
Apr 07, 2011 Niño Manaog rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In each poet he features, he unveils mysteries of the poets' worlds to me. He makes clear the motives and tendencies of otherwise unknown or unsung chroniclers of pain and suffering. Each piece allows me to unveil myself the metaphors and unlock the mysteries in each sensibility.
Oct 16, 2010 Kristy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Basically, it's a guy picking his favorite contemporary poems and then explaining why they're good. A little self-indulgent, but it's to be expected. They're like super-mini hybrids. The nice thing was that he included over 130 poets, and it was split between American and world poets.
Apr 13, 2009 Anna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A great collection of Poetry, with interesting information on all the poets. It contains a lot of my favorite poets, all the most successful poets and some that are not well-known but amazing in their own rite. If you like a compact collection of great poems, this book is for you. Lovely!
Aug 23, 2010 Erik rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
I've found so many great & and unfamiliar poets in here that I stopped counting. The essays connect, coming as they do from Ed Hirsch, poetry lover, as opposed to Ed Hirsch, poetry expert.
Jul 07, 2013 Paul rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Analyze and annotate and anthologize your favorite poems as a project. Choose carefully, wisely. Make top ten lists. Name-drop, occasionally. Quote away, evermore.
May 10, 2013 April rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed the poetic prose in defense of poetry. Striking selections that I was not familiar with made it an interesting exploration of poetry.
I. love. Ed. Hirsch. This is the book I could give to my aunt who can't stand poetry to explain to her why I love you.
Oct 29, 2007 De'Shawn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Poets
This book gave me a change to write poetry and I'm happy for the change. I'm more confident about myself afterword
Thorin McGee
Mar 08, 2011 Thorin McGee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Some amazing poems I don't think I would have found otherwise. One of the most rewarding books I ever bought.
Oct 29, 2007 Christine rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
My whole point in life was to move back to Nashville and write. Maybe this will help.
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Edward Hirsch is a celebrated poet and peerless advocate for poetry. He was born in Chicago in 1950—his accent makes it impossible for him to hide his origins—and educated at Grinnell College and the University of Pennsylvania, where he received a Ph.D. in Folklore. His devotion to poetry is lifelong.He has received numerous awards and fellowships, including a MacArthur Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fe ...more
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