|About the Book|
Jean Burdens new poems are characterized by exact observation, unobtrusive technical virtuosity, and a delicately glancing humor that accents and indeed intensifies their pathos.--Howard NemerovInside the most lyrical evocation of a past event, aMoreJean Burdens new poems are characterized by exact observation, unobtrusive technical virtuosity, and a delicately glancing humor that accents and indeed intensifies their pathos.--Howard NemerovInside the most lyrical evocation of a past event, a lost love, a long friendship, Jean Burden displays a tough-minded candor that makes these poems accessible, appealing, and, above all, durable--a wonderful book.--Maxine KuminJean Burdens poems are silky, meditative, purposeful. In a world that is not necessarily sensible, they are filled with the deft cadences of reason.--Mary OliverThe intelligence and lyricism displayed in Jean Burdens first book surges through these new poems. With luminous grace, they play upon the themes of love, loss, human kinship to animals, and the nature of seasons, blending humor with an inner vision influenced by her study of Zen. Still passionate, their rein is looser than her earlier poems, their outlook less romantic.As though observing this release, she writes, You ask what lasts./ I used to know: stones, the pull/ and suck of tides, trees/ rooted in ore. . . . What lasts? she asks again. With buoyant disregard for certainty, she responds: The turning day, falling water/ over stones, the sweet disorder/ of leaves,/ moons that come and go,/ wings.Burdens technical mastery is never slack. Poet Paul Zimmer describes her work as human, witty, and passionate, yet carefully rendered and framed. Linda Pastan says that her poems celebrate the mysterious and dangerous world they so marvelously describe. And Josephine Jacobsen says, Her work educates the ear and the mind. From deeply felt elegies for parents, lovers, and friends to an eerie drama or a playful dialogue poem, her work reveals a daring, skillful voice.Jean Burden describes herself as a poetry activist. Poetry editor of Yankee magazine since 1955, she conducts master poetry classes from her home in Altadena, California, and has recorded her work for the Library of Congress. A poetry series in her name, featuring visits by such poets as Mark Strand, Howard Nemerov, Lucille Clifton, and Tess Gallagher, was established by California State University at Los Angeles in 1986. Her earlier books include Naked as the Glass, a poetry collection- Journey Toward Poetry, a collection of essays on the creative process- A Celebration of Cats, an anthology of poetry about cats from the eighth to the twentieth century- and six best-sellers on animal welfare.