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Stealing Sugar from the Castle

Selected and New Poems, 1950-2013
Paperback Book
Publisher: 
WW Norton
 | 
March, 2016
ISBN:
9780393352481
In stock now: 
1
$24.95 CAD
Banyen's Description: 

 Selected from throughout Robert Bly’s monumental body of work from 1950 through the present, Stealing Sugar from the Castle represents the culmination of an astonishing career in American letters.

Bly has long been the voice of transcendentalism and meditative mysticism for his generation. Influenced by Emerson and Thoreau, inspired by spiritual traditions from Sufism to Gnosticism, his vision is “oracular” (Antioch Review). From the rich, earthy simplicity of Silence in the Snowy Fields (1962) to the wild yet intricately formal ghazals of My Sentence Was a Thousand Years of Joy (2005) and the striking richness and authority of Talking into the Ear of a Donkey (2011), Bly’s poetry is spiritual yet worldly, celebrating the uncanny beauty of the everyday.

“I am happy, / The moon rising above the turkey sheds. // The small world of the car / Plunges through the deep fields of the night,” he writes in “Driving Toward the Lac Qui Parle River.” Here is a poet moved by the mysteries of the world around him, speaking the language of images in a voice brilliant and bold.

IT’S NOT TO WORRY

Don’t worry, friends. This night of drinking will not
Keep you from your wedding. Each of us has been
Sent out, as Hafez said, naked on the roads!
 

You’ve been putting sumptuous images in poems
For years, hoping they will keep you warm,
But they don’t. You’re still naked on the roads!
 

People used to believe that only the heavy drinkers
Were badly dressed. Now all of us
Are wandering around naked on the roads!
 

Some of our old teachers used to wear vests
With gold chains and watch fobs. Now look
At them: all of them are naked on the roads!
 

The wild Italians like St. Francis had a sense
Of it—take a year off, get rid of your clothes,
Pick up a stick and go naked on the roads!
 

Sometimes it’s good to fail and be stupid.
If Hafez hadn’t been stupid, he wouldn’t have had
The joy of being naked on the roads!

“Here is the essential Robert Bly, ‘a man in love with the setting stars,’ a dark transcendentalist, a troublemaker, a mourner who keeps seeing the walls splashed with blood, a singer of boundless mysteries, imagination’s keeper, a witness to joy. He has been lighting up American poetry for more than sixty years.” —Edward Hirsch

Publisher’s Description: 

Selected from throughout Robert Blys monumental body of work from 1950 through the present, Stealing Sugar from the Castle represents the culmination of an astonishing career in American letters.

Bly has long been the voice of transcendentalism and meditative mysticism for his generation. Influenced by Emerson and Thoreau, inspired by spiritual traditions from Sufism to Gnosticism, his vision is oracular (Antioch Review). From the rich, earthy simplicity of Silence in the Snowy Fields (1962) to the wild yet intricately formal ghazals of My Sentence Was a Thousand Years of Joy (2005) and the striking richness and authority of Talking into the Ear of a Donkey (2011), Blys poetry is spiritual yet worldly, celebrating the uncanny beauty of the everyday. I am happy, / The moon rising above the turkey sheds. // The small world of the car / Plunges through the deep fields of the night, he writes in Driving Toward the Lac Qui Parle River. Here is a poet moved by the mysteries of the world around him, speaking the language of images in a voice brilliant and bold.

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