The Sounds of Poetry

A Brief Guide

Robert Pinsky

Farrar, Straus and Giroux Paperbacks

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The Poet Laureate's clear and entertaining account of how poetry works.

"Poetry is a vocal, which is to say a bodily, art," Robert Pinsky declares in The Sounds of Poetry. "The medium of poetry is the human body: the column of air inside the chest, shaped into signifying sounds in the larynx and the mouth. In this sense, poetry is as physical or bodily an art as dancing."

As Poet Laureate, Pinsky is one of America's best spokesmen for poetry. In this fascinating book, he explains how poets use the "technology" of poetry--its sounds--to create works of art that are "performed" in us when we read them aloud.

He devotes brief, informative chapters to accent and duration, syntax and line, like and unlike sounds, blank and free verse. He cites examples from the work of fifty different poets--from Shakespeare, Donne, and Herbert to W. C. Williams, Frost, Elizabeth Bishop, C. K. Williams, Louise Glück, and Frank Bidart.

This ideal introductory volume belongs in the library of every poet and student of poetry.

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Reviews

Praise for The Sounds of Poetry

"A painless journey through the foothills of poetry . . . One of the marvelous things about this book is Pinsky's deep recognition that a poem is successful not because of the poet's ambition or sense of purpose but because of the effect it creates in the reader, and in many readers over time"--Graham Christian, Boston Phoenix

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About the Author

Robert Pinsky

Robert Pinsky is Poet Laureate of the United States. FSG published The Inferno of Dante in 1994 and The Figured Wheel in 1996. He teaches in the graduate writing program at Boston University and lives in Newton Corner, Massachusetts.

Robert Pinsky

Juliet van Otteren
Robert Pinsky

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The Sounds of Poetry
A Brief Guide
Robert Pinsky

Award

National Book Critics Circle Awards - Nominee

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Farrar, Straus and Giroux Paperbacks
September 1999
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780374526177
ISBN10: 0374526176
5 x 7 1/2 inches, 144 pages
$14.00

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
8/19/2014
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781466878495
ISBN10: 1466878495
144 pages
$9.99
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