Poet's Choice
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Poet's Choice

4.16 of 5 stars 4.16  ·  rating details  ·  131 ratings  ·  30 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
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Hardcover, 432 pages
Published April 3rd 2006 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (first published 2006)
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Phil
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...more
tex norman
Feb 27, 2012 tex norman rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  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...more
Debnance
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...more
Paula
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...more
Roger DeBlanck
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
Matthew
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
James
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
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
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.
Jana
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!
Brian
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.
Richard
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
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.
Sacha
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
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.
Kristy
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.
Anna
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!
Erik
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.
Paul
Analyze and annotate and anthologize your favorite poems as a project. Choose carefully, wisely. Make top ten lists. Name-drop, occasionally. Quote away, evermore.
April
I enjoyed the poetic prose in defense of poetry. Striking selections that I was not familiar with made it an interesting exploration of poetry.
Wendy
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.
De'Shawn
Oct 29, 2007 De'Shawn rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  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
Some amazing poems I don't think I would have found otherwise. One of the most rewarding books I ever bought.
Christine
My whole point in life was to move back to Nashville and write. Maybe this will help.
Joseph
Probably the best poetry anthology I've ever read. Highly, highly recommended.
Nicco Mele
I love this book. I return to it frequently. Just a great way to read poems.
Ruth
So far, a masterpiece. Only poetry can have five stars, I've decided.
Gene Curry
Remarkable insights into the craft of amazing poets
Sarah
Poet's Choice by Edward Hirsch (2006)
Lulu
Looks to be an awsome anthology.
Christine Potter
This is a really terrific spin on the anthology idea--a group of articles about poets and poems as well as the poems themselves. The reader gets Hirsch's amazing depth of knowledge on poetry as well as his excellent taste in choosing it. His prose is very readable, by the way--perhaps not as lively as his readings, but smart and engaging.
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