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Omeros

Derek Walcott

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

0374523509

9780374523503

Trade Paperback

336 Pages

$18.00

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A New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice/Best Book of 1990

Considered by many readers to be Walcott's masterpiece, Omeros is an epic poem in five books with a circular narrative design. Taking its title from the Greek name for Homer, this great work simultaneously navigates two currents of history: the visible history charted in events—the tribal losses of the American Indian, the tragedy of African enslavement—and the interior and unwritten saga concerning the suffering of the individual in exile. This agile and resonant epic has been hailed for its "strenuous and thrilling . . . unbridled imaginative scope" by The Washington Post Book World.

REVIEWS

Praise for Omeros

"No poet rivals Mr. Walcott in humor, emotional depth, lavish inventiveness in language, or the ability to express the thoughts of his characters and compel the reader to follow the swift mutations of ideas and images in their minds. This wonderful story moves in a spiral, replicating human thought, and in the end, surprisingly, it makes us realize that history, all of it, belongs to us."—Mary Lefkowitz, The New York Times Book Review

"Characters come fully and movingly to life in Walcott's hands; black and white are treated with equal understanding and sympathy as they go their complicated ways . . . Wit and verbal play . . . enliven every page of this extraordinary poem . . . A constant source of surprise and delight from stanza to stanza, a music so subtle, so varied, so exquisitely right that it never once, in more than eight thousand lines, strikes a false note."—Bernard Knox, The New York Review of Books

"One of the great poems of our time."—John Lucas, New Statesman and Society

Reviews from Goodreads

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BOOK EXCERPTS

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Derek Walcott was born in St. Lucia in 1930. His Collected Poems: 1948-1984 was published in 1986; his subsequent works include the book-length poem Omeros (1990), The Bounty (1997), and Tiepolo's Hound (2000), illustrated with the poet's own paintings. He received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1992.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Derek Walcott

  • Derek Walcott was born in St. Lucia, the West Indies, in 1930. His Collected Poems: 1948-1984 was published in 1986, and his subsequent works include a book-length poem, Omeros (1990); a collection of verse, The Bounty (1997); and, in an edition illustrated with his own paintings, the long poem Tiepolo's Hound (2000). His most recent collections of plays are The Haitian Trilogy (2001) and Walker and The Ghost Dance (2002). Walcott received the Queen's Medal for Poetry in 1988 and the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1992. He has also been given the 2004 Anisfield-Wolf Lifetime Achievement Award.
  • Derek Walcott © Danielle Devaux / danidevaux.com
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