Caribou Poems

Charles Wright

Farrar, Straus and Giroux



Trade Paperback

96 Pages



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Charles Wright's truth-the truth of nature, of man's yearning for the divine, of aging-is at the heart of the renowned poet's latest collection, Caribou. This is an elegy to transient beauty, a song for the "stepchild hour, / belonging to neither the light nor dark, / The hour of disappearing things," and an expression of Wright's restless questing for a reality beyond the one before our eyes ("We are all going into a world of dark . . . It's okay. That's where the secrets are, / The big ones, the ones too tall to tell"). Caribou's strength is in its quiet, wry profundity.

"It's good to be here," Wright tells us. "It's good to be where the world's quiescent, and reminiscent." And to be here-in the pages of this stirring collection-is more than good; Caribou is another remarkable gift from the poet around whose influence "the whole world seems to orbit in a kind of meditative, slow circle" (Poetry).


Praise for Caribou

"Inside [Wright's] lyric, there resides a world well beyond the ordinary . . . It is the heart and soul that he delivers so eloquently."-Thomas Curwen, Los Angeles Times

"Haunted by what he has and has not said, Charles Wright pens a poetry of urgent expectation. His verse moves effortlessly from image to emotion to gnomic maxims about life and death. In them, he traces the lineaments of transcendence with delicacy and desire, humility and regret. Wright's is an elegiac yearning born of the 'stepchild hour, / belonging to neither the light nor dark, / The hour of disappearing things.' Winner of the National Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Pulitzer Prize and many other honors, Wright has carefully crafted Caribou, his 21st collection, around the tension of unbelief-reaching for an eternity that may not be there, ever watchful, always trusting, never sure . . . No one else writes quite like Wright, with his intensity of purpose, his attunement to the spheres, his keen eye on creation. With each new book, he breeds our expectation to find an ecstatic opening to the other world. Even as we make our home in this one."-Arlice Davenport, The Witchta Eagle

Reviews from Goodreads



  • Charles Wright

  • Charles Wright was awarded the National Book Award in Poetry in 1983 for Country Music and the 1995 Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize for Chickamauga. In 2008, he was honored for his lifetime achievement with the Rebekah Johnson Bobbitt National Prize for Poetry. He is also the winner of the Pulitzer Price, the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Griffin Poetry Prize, and the Bollingen Prize for American Poetry. In 2014, Wright was named the 20th Poet Laureate of the United States for 2014-2015. Wright lives in Charlottesville, Virginia.

  • Charles Wright © Holly Wright