The Door

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The Door

by Margaret Atwood

McClelland & Stewart | September 8, 2009 | Trade Paperback

The Door is rated 4 out of 5 by 1.
A stunning lyrical achievement and Atwood’s first collection of new poems in over a decade.

The Door is Margaret Atwood’s first book of poetry since the award-winning Morning in the Burned House (1995). Its fifty lucid yet urgent poems range in tone from lyric to ironic to meditative to prophetic, and in subject from the personal to the political, viewed in its broadest sense. They investigate the mysterious writing of poetry itself, as well as the passage of time and our shared sense of mortality. The collection begins with poems that consider the past and ends with harbingers of things to come.

Brave and compassionate, The Door interrogates the certainties that we build our lives on.


From the Hardcover edition.

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 128 pages, 8.44 × 5.3 × 0.32 in

Published: September 8, 2009

Publisher: McClelland & Stewart

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0771008473

ISBN - 13: 9780771008474

Found in: Fiction and Literature

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Reviews

Rated 4 out of 5 by from Beautiful poetry! Trying to think back to my university years, I can’t recall taking a poetry class. I remember reading poetry at some point, but I had always felt that poetry was so cryptic and to take a whole course on it would be frustrating. This year, however, I’ve been trying to convince myself to read more classics and more Canadian works — step out of my comfort zone. Poetry is definitely out of my comfort zone. I’m not sure why I picked up Margaret Atwood’s book of poetry, The Door. I’m sure there was something I saw somewhere while on my search for some good poetry, but I’m glad that I stumbled upon it. The poems were accessible and beautiful, wrenching your heart out on one page, turning you thoughtful on another, and making you laugh here and there. She can be brutally honest in one section, move to being slightly seductive in her innuendo, and end the entire collection on a thoughtful and hopeful note. The whole book flows effortlessly, despite Atwood dividing it up into five sections. The book also comes with an audio CD, Atwood reading a selection of the poems from the book, which was a welcome surprise. The first thing I did was put the CD in the player and listen to Atwood read the first poem. Immediately, I was reminded that to read poetry, one has to slow down. Poetry isn’t the same as consuming a book, you have to slow down, slip into the rhythm of the poem, and read it as if you were reading for the first time. Slowly, cautiously. Read it out loud if you have to. Then read it again. Some of my favourites from this book include, Year of the Hen; Owl and Pussycat, Some Years Later; War Photo; The Line: Five Variations; and the title poem, The Door. I read this short book over the course of three nights, alternating between listening to the audio CD and reading out lout to myself. When I finished reading, I went back to read my favourites again. Since I took this out from the library, I will have to return it eventually. Perhaps I’ll put it on my wishlist so I can get a copy one day. Atwood is a Canadian treasure — I look forward to exploring more of her works.
Date published: 2012-02-11

– More About This Product –

The Door

by Margaret Atwood

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 128 pages, 8.44 × 5.3 × 0.32 in

Published: September 8, 2009

Publisher: McClelland & Stewart

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0771008473

ISBN - 13: 9780771008474

Read from the Book

GASOLINEShivering in the almost-drizzleinside the wooden outboard,nose over gunwale,I watched it drip and spreadon the sheenless water:the brightest thing in wartime,a slick of rainbow,ephemeral as insect wings,green, blue, red, and pink,my shimmering private sideshow.Was this my best toy, then?This toxic smudge, this overspillfrom a sloppy gascan filledwith essence of danger?I knew that it was poison,its beauty an illusion:I could spell flammable.But still, I loved the smell:so alien, a whiffof starstuff.I would have liked to drink it,inhale its iridescence.As if I could.That''s how gods lived: as if.  EUROPE ON $5 A DAYSunrise. The thin pocked sheetsare being washed. The city''s old,but new to me, and thereforestrange, and therefore fresh.Everything''s clear, but flat –even the oculist''s dingy eyes,even the butcher''s, with its painted horse,its trays of watery entrailsand slabs of darkening flesh.I walk along,looking at everything equally.I''ve got all I own in this bag.I''ve cut myself off.I can feel the placewhere I used to be attached.It''s raw, as when you grateyour finger. It''s a shredded messof images. It hurts.But where exactly on meis this torn-off stem?Now here, now there.Meanwhile the other girl,the one with the memory,is coming nearer and nearer.She''s catching up to me,trailing behind her, like red smoke,the rope we share.


From the Hardcover edition.

Table of Contents

I
Gasoline
Europe on $5 a day
Year of the Hen
Resurrecting the dolls'' house
Blackie in Antarctica
Mourning for cats
January
Butterfly
My mother dwindles . . .
Crickets
 
II
The poet has come back . . .
Heart
Your children cut their hands . . .
Sor Juana works in the garden
Owl and Pussycat, some years later
The poets hang on
Poetry reading
A poor woman learns to write
The singer of owls
 
III
Ten o''clock news
The weather
It''s autumn
Bear lament
Ice palace
Secrecy
The last rational man
White cotton T- shirt
War photo
War photo 2
Nobody cares who wins
The Valley of the Heretics
Saint Joan of Arc on a postcard
The hurt child
They give evidence
 
IV
Enough of these discouragements
Possible activities
Questioning the dead
The nature of Gothic
The line: five variations
Another visit to the Oracle
 
V
Boat song
Dutiful
String tail
Stealing the Hummingbird Cup
One day you will reach . . .
Disturbed earth
Reindeer moss on granite
The Third Age visits the Arctic
You heard the man you love
At Brute Point
The door
 
Acknowledgements


From the Hardcover edition.

From the Publisher

A stunning lyrical achievement and Atwood’s first collection of new poems in over a decade.

The Door is Margaret Atwood’s first book of poetry since the award-winning Morning in the Burned House (1995). Its fifty lucid yet urgent poems range in tone from lyric to ironic to meditative to prophetic, and in subject from the personal to the political, viewed in its broadest sense. They investigate the mysterious writing of poetry itself, as well as the passage of time and our shared sense of mortality. The collection begins with poems that consider the past and ends with harbingers of things to come.

Brave and compassionate, The Door interrogates the certainties that we build our lives on.


From the Hardcover edition.

From the Jacket

“Atwood’s poems are short, glistening with terse, bright images, untentative, closing like a vise. . . . A plain, explicit poetry, perfectly sure of itself.”
— New York Times

“Margaret Atwood is best known, of course, as a novelist. But she brings to her poetry the same sharp eye and stinging wit.”
— Robert Haas, Washington Post

“Atwood is always vital, powerful, magnetically readable. . . . Readers who know only her novels really owe it to themselves to read her poems.”
— Booklist

“Margaret Atwood’s The Door is one of the best books by one of the best poets writing in English, written in a sparse, elegiac tone that combines illuminating intelligence with caustic humour, and wisdom that for once truly comes with age.”
- Alberto Manguel, Times Literary Supplement Books of the Year


From the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

MARGARET ATWOOD is the author of more than forty books -- novels, short stories, poetry, literary criticism, social history, and books for children. Atwood''s work is acclaimed internationally and has been published around the world. Her novels include The Handmaid''s Tale and Cat''s Eye -- both shortlisted for the Booker Prize; The Robber Bride, winner of the Trillium Book Award and a finalist for the Governor General''s Award; Alias Grace, winner of the prestigious Giller Prize in Canada and the Premio Mondello in Italy, and a finalist for the Governor General''s Award, the Booker Prize, the Orange Prize, and the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award; The Blind Assassin, winner of the Booker Prize and a finalist for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award; and Oryx and Crake, a finalist for The Giller Prize, the Governor General''s Award, the Orange Prize, and the Man Booker Prize. Her most recent books of fiction are Moral Disorder, Oryx and Crake, and The Year of the Flood. Margaret Atwood lives in Toronto with novelist Graeme Gibson. Visit www.margaretatwood.ca.

Editorial Reviews

“Atwood’s poems are short, glistening with terse, bright images, untentative, closing like a vise. . . . A plain, explicit poetry, perfectly sure of itself.”
— New York Times

“Margaret Atwood is best known, of course, as a novelist. But she brings to her poetry the same sharp eye and stinging wit.”
— Robert Haas, Washington Post

“Atwood is always vital, powerful, magnetically readable. . . . Readers who know only her novels really owe it to themselves to read her poems.”
— Booklist

“Margaret Atwood’s The Door is one of the best books by one of the best poets writing in English, written in a sparse, elegiac tone that combines illuminating intelligence with caustic humour, and wisdom that for once truly comes with age.”
- Alberto Manguel, Times Literary Supplement Books of the Year


From the Hardcover edition.