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Sharon Olds completes her cycle of family poems in a book at once intense and harmonic, playful with language, and rich with a new self-awareness and sense of irony. The opening poem, with its sequence of fearsome images of war, serves as a prelude to poems of home in which humor, anger, and compassion sing together with lyric energy sometimes comic, sometimes filled with a kind of unblinking forgiveness. These songs of joy and danger public and private illuminate one another. As the book unfolds, the portrait of the mother goes through a moving revisioning, leading us to a final series of elegies of hard-won mourning. One Secret Thing is charged throughout with Sharon Olds s characteristic passion, imagination, and poetic power. The doctor on the phone was young, maybe on hisfirst rotation in the emergency room.On the ancient boarding-school radio, in the attic hall, the announcer had given myboyfriend s name as one of twobrought to the hospital after the sunriseservice, the egg-hunt, the crash one of themcritical, one of them dead. I was looking at thestairwell banisters, at their lathing, the necks and knobs like joints and bones, the varnish here thicker here thinner I had said Which one of them died, and now the world wasan ant s world: the huge crumb of eachsecond thrown, somehow, up ontomy back, and the young, tired voicesaid my fresh love s name. from Easter 1960 "

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780375711770
ISBN-10: 0375711775
Format: Paperback
(212mm x 151mm x 9mm)
Imprint: Alfred A. Knopf
Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf
Publish Date: 15-Nov-2008
Country of Publication: United States

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Author Biography - Sharon Olds

Sharon Olds was born in San Francisco. Her poetry has been chosen as the Lamont Poetry Selection and won the National Book Critics Circle Award. She lives in New York City.

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