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Frolic and Detour


Paul Muldoon

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Frolic and Detour Download image

ISBN10: 0374158398
ISBN13: 9780374158392


144 Pages



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Though Frolic and Detour is Paul Muldoon’s thirteenth collection, it shows all the energy and ambition we might generally associate with a first book. Here, the poet brings his characteristic humor and humanity to the chickadee, the house wren, the deaths of Leonard Cohen and C. K. Williams, the Irish Rising, the Great War, and how “a streak of ragwort / may yet shine / as an off-the-record / remark becomes the party line.” Frolic and Detour reminds us that the sidelong glance is the sweetest, the tangential approach the most telling, and shows us why Paul Muldoon was described by Nick Laird, writing in The New York Review of Books, as “the most formally ambitious and technically innovative of modern poets, [who] writes poems like no one else.”


Praise for Frolic and Detour

"Muldoon’s extraordinary facility with both familiar and rare closed forms and his acrobatically inventive rhyming and off-rhyming have diminished not a whit in his sixties . . . Like Ashbery in his final collections, or Cohen in his final albums, Muldoon has nothing left to prove, and can take delight simply in doing what he inimitably does. And his delight is ours."—Paul Scott Stanfield, Ploughshares

"[Muldoon] has Donne’s baroque intellectual conceits, but also Byron’s ebullience in word-play . . . If you buy one book of poetry this year, make it this one."—Stuart Kelly, Scotland on Sunday

"Celebrated for his dense, imaginative allusions, Muldoon fills his poems with a cast from antiquity to the present."—Publishers Weekly

About the author

Paul Muldoon

Paul Muldoon was born in County Armagh in 1951. He now lives in New York. A former radio and television producer for the BBC in Belfast, he has taught at Princeton University for thirty years. He is the author of twelve collections of poetry, including Moy Sand and Gravel, for which he won the 2003 Pulitzer Prize, and Selected Poems 1968–2014.

Peter Cook

Paul Muldoon

Official Links

Read Author Bio at The Poetry Foundation