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by Louise Gluck

This collection of stunningly beautiful poems encompasses the natural, human, and spiritual realms, and is bound together by the universal themes of time and mortality. With clarity and sureness of craft, Gluck's poetry questions, explores, and finally celebrates the ordeal of being alive.

Download Wild Iris epub
ISBN: 0880013346
ISBN13: 978-0880013345
Category: Literature
Subcategory: Poetry
Author: Louise Gluck
Language: English
Publisher: Ecco; Reprint edition (November 1, 1993)
Pages: 63 pages
ePUB size: 1694 kb
FB2 size: 1917 kb
Rating: 4.9
Votes: 339
Other Formats: mobi docx lit doc

The canon of Louise Glück is symphonic and deep. She has been a central figure in American poetry for more than five decades, her first book, Firstborn, published in 1968. Glück has authored 17 books of poetry, the latest being Faithful and Virtuous Nicht (2014). Her work has been continually acclaimed for its elegant starkness, sensitivity to the emotions common to humans, lyricism, and the almost visionary insights revealed throughout her work. Her poems quietly dare the reader to step into their darkest and ultimate feelings.The Wild Iris (1992) presents us with a poet who looks outside the ordinary while incorporating the ordinary as the voices for her verse. The language of flowers animates this work, giving a terse credibility to flowers as the structure that provides shape for this work. Her visionary poetics are on sharp display. Glück’s Pulitzer prize-winning collection presents a solid demonstration of what has been noted as her visionary poetics. The book, written in three segments set in a garden, deftly makes use of three voices; flowers speaking to the gardener poet, the voice of the poet, and an omniscient god figure. The use of flowers, each having their own independent mien, is deftly used to imply human sentiments and characteristics, as well as to give a symphonic unity to the book. This device is subtle and challenges the reader to understand flowers as human agents, each with a unique, pervasive personality. A distinct meaning has been attributed to flowers for thousands of years. Many traditional cultures throughout Europe, Asia, and the Middle East have made notable and extensive use of floriography, the language of flowers. Glück’s use of this convention adds a mysterious and subtle theme to this collection. She invites the reader to participate in her embodiment of floral voice. Without this agreement between reader and poet, the poems lose an important sense of spiritual connectivity. There is a flatness, which is only relieved by the belief in the floral voice. The eponymous poem, The Wild Iris, is a brilliant illustration of the power such a personification has. In this poem, the voice is that of an Iris. It is essential that the reader engage in acceptance of floral sentience. In the fourth stanza, a shift in voice reveals Iris as conscious, capable of feelings and attribution.  It is terrible to survive/ as consciousness/ buried in the dark earth. This stanza reveals the iris’ awareness of its own animate being. The stark realization of being conscious and buried is palpable in a terrifying way.The poems in this volume permeated my soul with a sense of life, hope, and eternal cycles of being. Some of the poems had to be spoken in whispers, others, loud declarations. Glück took me through a day, the seasons, and the annual cycle of life with her attention to the life of flowers in each season, the blooms ephemeral, yet forever. Her book of flowers left me with a deep feeling of hope and the rightness of my universe. The eternal nature of life is reaffirmed. (or, ‘the dude abides’)
Wild Iris
somewhat disappointed. Didn't click with me.
The Wild Iris by Pulitzer Prize winner Louise Glück combines images of flowers and gardening with emotions of spiritual longing, despair, and frustration. This is the first book of poem I've read by the poet, and honestly, I would not recommend it to a friend because there are few poems that I truly enjoyed reading. My problem with this collection for me is that many of the poems rely on the reader being able to recognize the names of flowers and their meanings or what they symbolize. Lacking this knowledge, I sat with my dictionary trying to decipher what the flora in question looked like and figuring out the flora's possible other meaning, such as roses are associated with love and lilies are associated with mourning. The imagery and meanings of "The Jacob's Ladder" and "The Gold Lily" worked for me (once I learned Jacob's Ladder is a type of phlox plant), but others like "Snowdrops" and "Clover" were more work than they were worth. Also the use of the canonical expression "Matins" did not work as well with its poems as "Vespers" did with its poems. "Vespers," at least, dealt with the evening of the Seasons, Fall, or with the twilight of a person's life. "Matins" had no relation to the Season's morning or a human being's morning in any forms. I'm glad I read this book for the simple reason I can learn from what I liked and disliked and use this in my own writings.
A book I love, am delighted to have in my library again.
Loved this book.
First book that I read from L. Gluck and really enjoyed it.