The Apple Trees at Olema: New and Selected Poems

Author(s): Robert Hass

Poetry

"The Apple Trees at Olema" includes work from Robert Hass's first five books - "Field Guide," "Praise," "Human Wishes," "Sun Under Wood," and "Time and Materials" - as well as a substantial gathering of new poems, including a suite of elegies, a series of poems in the form of notebook musings on the nature of storytelling, a suite of summer lyrics, and two experiments in pure narrative that meditate on personal relations in a violent world and read like small, luminous novellas. From the beginning, his poems have seemed entirely his own: a complex hybrid of the lyric line, with an unwavering fidelity to human and nonhuman nature, and formal variety and surprise, and a syntax capable of thinking through difficult things in ways that are both perfectly ordinary and really unusual. Over the years, he has added to these qualities a range and a formal restlessness that seem to come from a skeptical turn of mind, an acute sense of the artifice of the poem and of the complexity of the world of lived experience that a poem tries to apprehend. Hass's work is grounded in the beauty of the physical world. His familiar landscapes - San Francisco, the northern California coast, the Sierra high country - are vividly alive in his work. His themes include art, the natural world, desire, family life, the life between lovers, the violence of history, and the power and inherent limitations of language. He is a poet who is trying to say, as fully as he can, what it is like to be alive in his place and time. His style - formed in part by American modernism, in part by his long apprenticeship as a translator of the Japanese haiku masters and Czeslaw Milosz - combines intimacy of address, a quick intelligence, a virtuosic skill with long sentences, intense sensual vividness, and a light touch. It has made him immensely readable and his work widely admired.

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"Hass's achievement is often nothing less than splendid ... Conscious of language and its limitations, the tug-of-war between mind and body, Hass's newest work still manages to wholeheartedly engage with the world around him ... a generous gift for any reader." - Washington Post

Robert Hass was born in San Francisco in 1941. He attended St. Mary’s College and Stanford University. His books of poetry include Time and Materials, for which he received the Pulitzer Prize in 2007 and the National Book Award in 2008; Sun Under Wood, for which he received the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1996; Human Wishes; Praise, for which he received the William Carlos Williams Award in 1979; and Field Guide, which was selected by Stanley Kunitz for the Yale Younger Poets Series.

General Fields

  • : 9780061923906
  • : HarperCollins Publishers
  • : HarperCollins Publishers Ltd
  • : 0.426
  • : April 2011
  • : 229mm X 154mm X 25mm
  • : United States
  • : May 2011
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Robert Hass
  • : Paperback / softback
  • : 368