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Winner of the PEN/Voelcker career achievement award in poetry "Misgivings" is C. K. William's searing recollection of his family's extreme dynamics and of his parents' deaths after years of struggle, bitterness, inner conflict, and, finally, love. Like Kafka's self-revealing "Letter to His Father," "Misgivings "is a full of doubt, both philosophical and personal, but as a work of art it is sure and true. Williams's father was an "ordinary businessman"--angry, demanding, addicted to the tension he created with the people he loved; a man who could recite the Greek myths to his son yet vowed never to apologize to anybody. Wiiiams's mother was a housewife, a woman with a great capacity for pleasure, who was stoical about the family's dire early poverty yet remained affected by it even when they became well-off. Together, these two formed what Williams calls the "conspiracy that made me who I am." His account of their life together and of their deaths--his father's in a final abandonment of the will to live, his mother's with calm resignation--is a literary form of the reconciliation the family achieved at the end of his parents' lives, composed as a series of short takes, a double helix of experience and recollection.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780374527280
ISBN-10: 0374527288
Format: Paperback / softback
(224mm x 133mm x 11mm)
Pages: 176
Imprint: Farrar, Strauss & Giroux-3pl
Publisher: Farrar, Strauss & Giroux-3pl
Publish Date: 9-Apr-2001
Country of Publication: United States

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Author Biography - C K Williams

C. K. Williams (1936 2015) published twenty-two books of poetry including, "Flesh and Blood," which won the National Book Critics Circle Award; "Repair," which won the Pulitzer Prize in Poetry; and "The Singing," winner of the National Book Award. Williams was awarded the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize in 2005. He wrote a critical study, "On Whitman"; a memoir, "Misgivings"; and two books of essays, "Poetry and Consciousness "and "In Time: Poets, Poems, ""and the Rest.""

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