The extraordinary new poetry collection by Tracy K. Smith, the Poet Laureate of the United States Even the men in black armor, the onesJangling handcuffs and keys, what elseAre they so buffered against, if not loves bladeSizing up the hearts familiar meat?We watch and grieve. We sleep, stir, eat.Love: the heart sliced open, gutted, clean.Love: naked almost in the everlasting street,Skirt lifted by a different kind of breeze.from Unrest in Baton RougeIn Wade in the Water, Tracy K. Smith boldly ties Americas contemporary moment both to our nations fraught founding history and to a sense of the spirit, the everlasting. These are poems of sliding scale: some capture a flicker of song or memory; some collage an array of documents and voices; and some push past the known world into the haunted, the holy. Smiths signature voiceinquisitive, lyrical, and wryturns over what it means to be a citizen, a mother, and an artist in a culture arbitrated by wealth, men, and violence. Here, private utterance becomes part of a larger choral arrangement as the collection widens to include erasures of The Declaration of Independence and the correspondence between slave owners, a found poem comprised of evidence of corporate pollution and accounts of near-death experiences, a sequence of letters written by African Americans enlisted in the Civil War, and the survivors reports of recent immigrants and refugees. Wade in the Water is a potent and luminous book by one of Americas essential poets....
|Title||:||Wade in the Water: Poems|
|Format Type||:||Kindle Edition|
|Number of Pages||:||96 pages|
|Url Type||:||Home » Wade » Wade in the Water: Poems|
Wade in the Water: Poems Reviews
Historical and enduring social wounds addressed in this lyrical and meditative collection that contrasts light with night by the current Poet Laureate of the United States.
Includes many erasure poems based on historical archives of African American soldiers and their families during the Civil War, retaining misspelled words and punctuation. Erasure is a form of poetry created by erasing words from an existing text in prose and framing the result as a poem. These are extremely moving.
Modern situa ...more
With a reading plan in place to complete a number of fun and rewarding challenges, 2018 looked bright. The year actually got off to a great start and then real life got in the way. This year is being devoted to family celebrations and just being with family so reading is going to be at a premium. I opted out of all of my challenges, and culled my to read pile down to just those books that I am genuinely interested in or are what I called award winning game changers.
One of these game changers is ...more
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These poems are reflect how minorities in America have grappled with racism. Each piece pulls at your senses and challenges you to think more deeply about the world around you. The history of how black people survived slavery and reconstruction is often overlooked. In the poem "Unwritten" the use of real correspondence of African Americans while fighting in the Civil War and surviving after, let's us glimpse into the deep cavern of history that has not b ...more
When I saw this at my local bookstore, I snatched it off the table. When I gave the cover a closer look, I noticed that Tracy K. Smith has been named US poet laureate. How cool is that.
As the title suggests, Smith does trouble the water in this collect; you could also say that she leans in. The collection as a whole is stirred, in that Smith employs a variety of techniques, styles, and tones, which feels both unsettling and a relief. The repetition and slight, internal rhyme in Ash carry the rea ...more
It's tough when the bottom of the book's cover reads "By the Poet Laureate of the United States" (not that I wouldn't minds such baggage). Tough to live up to the expectations. And Tracy K. Smith doesn't. Not if you're looking for stop-you-in-your-tracks poems that make you want to reread just to hear the pleasant little jingle again. I've read poetry like that, and no, not a lot of that here.
The best part is Smith's erasure poetry. There's a brilliant section that must've taken a lot of work. S ...more
Masterful. Tight, fiery, wildly imaginative. I'll need to reread to absorb all the nutrients of its intent.
4 1/2 stars.
sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people.
He has plundered our—
destroyed the lives of our—
taking away our—
abolishing our most valuable—
and altering fundamentally the Forms of our—
In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for
Redress in the most humble terms:
Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury.
We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration
and settlement here.
on the high Seas
Wonderful writing, but, in the case of the audio book, the author does a disservice to her own work. Reading in "poet voice" (yes, this is a real thing... check out http://culturalanalytics.org/2018/04/... ) flattens most of the poems into emotionless recitations with distractingly unnatural rhythms. Occasionally her reading falls into a more natural and relaxed cadence and the artistry is allowed to shine though, but this is the exception.