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The Pupil: Poems

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  54 Ratings  ·  8 Reviews
Hailed by Peter Davison in the Boston Sunday Globe as a poet who “engages the underground stream of our lives at depths that only two or three living poets can match,” W. S. Merwin now gives us The Pupil, a volume of astonishing range and extraordinary beauty: a major literary event.

These are poems of great lyrical intensity, concerned with darkness and light, with the sea
Paperback, 112 pages
Published October 15th 2002 by Knopf (first published 2001)
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Nov 13, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: poetry, reviewed
Just picked this up because it seemed like a good poetry read. But was not all that moved by the poems. Although they were beautiful and nice to read.
Jan 10, 2011 rated it did not like it
Recommended to Mark by: Sara Q
Shelves: poems-poetry
I am going to write this although I am only 3/4s of the way finished.

Despite having found 2 poems that I particularly enjoy, and appreciating Merwin's often simple, yet profound, choice of subjects, I am not enjoying this book.

The poems are all written in lower case with no punctuation, and most lines are enjambed. While this cluster of techniques can often be effective they also depend somewhat for their effectiveness on the reader being able to easily parse out where the pauses and stops are.
Mar 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This, with "The Shadow of Sirius" are probably the two books of poetry I have been the most caught up in a very long time. Before these, for me, was John Donne.

In my review of "The Shadow of Sirius," I call this "easy" poetry for its accessibility. I urge you to get that from it, and then let it soak into you, or vise versa.

To boot, Mr. Merwin is an exceptionally pleasant and warm fellow in person.
Nicco Mele
Feb 20, 2008 rated it really liked it
My favorite poem: "The Night Plums"... my favorite line: "when the stones of the barnyard lay buried in sleep..." - it just drops on and off the tongue with a graceful bounce.
Aug 02, 2008 rated it really liked it
oh white lemurs who invented the dance
this is the time afterward
can you hear me
who invented the story

part of the story
Dan Simmons
Jan 08, 2013 rated it it was ok
I would have given this collection one star except this is W.S. Merwin and I know the fault is all mine.
Oct 13, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I love Merwin in general, but I prefer his later stuff. Concise and pure.
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William Stanley Merwin (New York City, September 30, 1927) is an American poet, credited with over 30 books of poetry, translation and prose. During the 1960s anti-war movement, Merwin's unique craft was thematically characterized by indirect, unpunctuated narration. In the 1980s and 1990s, Merwin's writing influence derived from his interest in Buddhist philosophy and deep ecology. Residing in Ha ...more
More about W.S. Merwin
“this is the white wind that
you cannot believe here it is
and the owl sails out to see whose
turn it is tonight to be changed”
“...and I was looking up
out of a time of late blessings”
More quotes…