- By John Koethe

Falling Water

  • Title: Falling Water
  • Author: John Koethe
  • ISBN: 9780060952570
  • Page: 472
  • Format: Paperback
  • Falling Water As a poet who is a teacher of philosophy John Koethe knows better than most of us the uses and dissatisfactions of both disciplines if indeed they are disciplines In this ravishing and haunted book

    As a poet who is a teacher of philosophy, John Koethe knows better than most of us the uses and dissatisfactions of both disciplines, if indeed they are disciplines In this ravishing and haunted book he comes face to face with the time when than half my life is gone, and must try to find the meaning of a childish dream of love, and then the loss of love, and al As a poet who is a teacher of philosophy, John Koethe knows better than most of us the uses and dissatisfactions of both disciplines, if indeed they are disciplines In this ravishing and haunted book he comes face to face with the time when than half my life is gone, and must try to find the meaning of a childish dream of love, and then the loss of love, and all the intricate years between As funny and fresh as it is tragic and undeceived, Falling Water ranks with Wallace Stevens Auroras of Autumn as one of the profoundest meditations on existence ever formulated by an American Poet John Ashbery To describe with unpromising candor the inner life of a man adrift in the waning of the 20th century is one thing, but to do it without a shred of self pity is another The poems of his new book, Falling Water, are like no one else s In them, even the most extreme exertions of consciousness are transformed into the luminous measures of beautiful speech Mark Strand In this ambitious volume, the magnificent poet who gave us The Late Wisconsin Spring moves ever swiftly and surefootedly into the deepest regions of self invention the past few poets write accurately and painfully about that uncanny estranged place that never finds its way out of us the present, or idea of the present, as mere projection, and yet a projection so poignantly, materially, tenderly touched it gleams with all its claustrophobic distances and the future I wish that time could bring the future back again And let me see things as they used to seem to me Before I found myself alone, in an emancipated state Alone and free and filled With its low key blank verse, its apparently casual manner of speech, its digressions, asides, recollections with all its taking its time this is a poetry of magnificent undertow, all proximity of thought, singularity of contemplation, protest, pretext, reflection all disenchantment and then, suddenly, blazing re enchantment, with the newly, lovingly, seen through real Jorie Graham

    1 thought on “Falling Water

    1. The mind survives its disappointments *Yet people live in one another’s minds, *Perhaps the hardest feeling is the oneOf unrealized possibility:Thoughts left unspoken, actions left undoneThat seemed to be of little consequenceTo things considered in totality;And yet that might have made a difference.Sometimes the thought of what one might have doneStarts to exhaust the life that it explains,After so much of what one knew has gone.*Sometimes at nightThe banished unrealities return,as though a r [...]

    2. One of the best books of poetry I've ever read. Maybe its philosophical loftiness wont speak to all but, WHOOO, for moi, this bell had a clapper! Poetry, for me, expresses moods and states of beings that there are no words for, or rather, there are poems. At times I felt like theses poems were reading my mind, or reading my life. On a technical note, hardly any nouns in this book, its rather remarkable. Ashbery attains these heights, but he's still using stuff, Kothe is able to do as much withou [...]

    3. This is a volume of poetry I will read many times, due to the inner journeys Koethe invites the reader on, which are both personal and universal. His style reflects his life as a professor of philosophy -- many of these pieces leave questions only partially answered, raising further questions and sparking reflection. His long lines and a few of his long pieces seemed almost dreamlike. He has the ability to be clear in language but still intriguing and surprising in where his pieces are heading. [...]

    4. If you do not read any other poem in this collection, be sure to read the title poem. An amazing example of discursive poetry working. Self-exploration, honest langauge. What a ride!

    5. I finished this collection wanting something more concrete, more experience and less abstraction, but also no longer convinced that such things existed. I'm not sure if that sense was a sign of dissatisfaction with what I'd just read, or a sign of the success of a collection that questions the verisimilitude of connection and conceives memory as a fictional construct. As reviewer Anne Doolittle wrote, "Koethe doesn’t believe in a common reality available to the artistic enterprise.  One could [...]

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