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Surrealist Love Poems

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4.19  ·  Rating details ·  148 ratings  ·  12 reviews
Love poetry includes, yes, descriptions of the beloved. And images of a fantastic idyll complete with falling stars, the sound of the sea, and beautiful countryside. In the hands of Surrealists, though, love poetry also includes gravediggers and murderers, dice and garbage, snakeskin purses and "the drunken kisses of cyclones." Surrealism, the movement founded in the 1920s ...more
Paperback, 120 pages
Published January 1st 2006 by University of Chicago Press (first published September 30th 2001)
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4.19  · 
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 ·  148 ratings  ·  12 reviews


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David Schaafsma
Caws, who edited this wonderful collection, is a surrealism scholar. Why love, for the dada/surrealists? Because thy hated Rationalism, logic, and what it led to, as they saw it: industrialism, war, environmental destruction. Love is the unquantifiable, the irrational, emotional, part of beauty. In this collection we have as we might expect work from the masters of surrealism such as Breton and Eluard, but he also includes surprising and fun work by Picasso, Frida Kahlo... Joyce Mansour and many ...more
Hasan Makhzoum
Jul 22, 2018 rated it liked it

A Woman Who Was Beautiful
Alice Paalen

A Woman Who Was Beautiful
One day
Removed her face
Her head became smooth
Blind and deaf
Safe from the snares of mirrors
And from looks of love
Amid the reeds of the sun
Her head hatched by a sparrohawk could not be found
Secrets much more beautiful
For not having been said
Words not written
Steps erased
Nameless ashes flown away
Without marble plaque
Desecrating memory
So many wings to break
Before nightfall
***

I Want to Sleep with You
Joyce Mansour

I want to sleep with you sid
...more
Dah
Nov 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I love this collection, and the Man Ray foto
on the cover is one of my favorites.

I have found poems in this book that I have
not seen published anywhere else.

There are a good number of female poets too!

Loaded with a dozen surrealist photographs
that accompany some of the writings.
Greg Converse
Aug 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Is it five stars, or is it one?
Is it the real turtle soup, or the neck of the window reflected in my hair?
Jenn
Jul 24, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry
I want to write love poetry like Robert Desnos. I'm using this in my Surrealism and Rebellion class in the fall and am so happy to have it to enjoy slowly this summer.
Sienna
Oct 31, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2012, poetry
Her charm is infinite
She flutters hoop-wood over little waves

(Louis Aragon, "The Approach of Love and a Kiss")

hello hello night again
the rain has gravedigger fingers

(Aimé Césaire, "The Automatic Crystal")

This is a slender, sexy, heavy little book, red and black and soft grey, full of "A is B"-style propositions that are impossible and true and occasionally kind of disgusting. Par for the course with the surrealists, right? Caws has compiled a sensual, sensuous set of poems about love and poetry
...more
Mark
Feb 24, 2012 rated it it was ok
This was alright, although, clearly, surrealism is not my thing. There were a couple of poems by Paul Eluard that I particularly liked and one by Joyce Mansour. There was a second one by Joyce Mansour that was particularly lovely except for a disgusting image in the second to last line, but then that was what made it a surrealist poem, I guess.

Anyway, not bad and I think I'll keep it around as there were bits throughout that I liked as approaches to love poetry, just very few that I liked in the
...more
Jonathan
Sep 19, 2007 rated it really liked it
I normally don't care for poetry, at all. I think I bought this for my wife and ended up reading it and thought it was great - not sure if that says anything good about the poems in it or if I just happened to hit on some good writing.
Nico
Jan 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
Page after page of inspiration for lovers AND poets!
Jessica
Dec 03, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
A great selection of hauntingly beautiful poems.
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Mary Ann Caws (born 1933) is an American author, art historian and literary critic

She is currently a Distinguished Professor of English, French and Comparative Literature at the Graduate School of the City University of New York. She is an expert on Surrealism and modern English and French literature, having written biographies of Marcel Proust, Virginia Woolf, and Henry James. She works on the in
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