The Sorrow Psalms: A Book of Twentieth-Century Elegy by Lynn StronginThe Sorrow Psalms: A Book of Twentieth-Century Elegy by Lynn Strongin

The Sorrow Psalms: A Book of Twentieth-Century Elegy

EditorLynn Strongin

Paperback | June 1, 2006

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Like the pilot in W. B. Yeats's “An Irish Airman Foresees His Death,” each of us is challenged to “balance with this life, this death.” As we share a common fate, we also share loss and sorrow. At their most mournful, with praise and love and raw emotion, poets throughout time have put their grief to paper. The elegy and its inherent drama---the inevitable struggle between love and death---are showcased in The Sorrow Psalms, a collection of twentieth-century elegies edited by poet Lynn Strongin. Divided into five thematic sections, the elegies convey the impact of death and its aftermath; focus on the loss of family, lovers, and dear friends; contend with the loss of a child; deal with violent death; and seek to look beyond death to find some kind of resolution. The traditional stages of grieving---denial, anger, depression, and acceptance---are evident, either singly in the expression of one profound emotion or all at once, in these elegies. Strongin's introduction on the origins of the elegy and its evolution through the twentieth century explains what elegy has been and what it can be. “There is a river of sorrows that flows, which our creative spirits have mapped,” she writes. As they evoke and exalt the dead and give expression to the deepest emotions, the resonant elegies collected here offer comfort to those who personally or collectively grieve the passing of loved ones. Contributors includeJohn Berryman, Elizabeth Bishop, Lucille Clifton, Billy Collins, e. e. cummings, James Dickey, Donald Hall, Jane Kenyon, Denise Levertov, Sandra McPherson, Joyce Peseroff, Robert Peters, Stan Rice, Adrienne Rich, Carl Sandburg, Anne Sexton, Ruth Stone, Mark Strand, Dylan Thomas, William Carlos Williams, C. D. Wright

About The Author

Lynn Strongin was born and raised in New York City. The recipient of numerous grants and prizes, she has published eight books of poetry. She currently lives in Victoria, British Columbia.
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Details & Specs

Title:The Sorrow Psalms: A Book of Twentieth-Century ElegyFormat:PaperbackDimensions:294 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.5 inPublished:June 1, 2006Publisher:University Of Iowa PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:087745986X

ISBN - 13:9780877459866

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“A wise and judicious collection illuminating the eternal human desire to memorialize those who have passed through our lives. The Sorrow Psalms pays tribute to those who have shared their gift of learning and joy, but also includes poems that depict acts of violence resulting in death and lamentation. It is a celebration of the tenacity of the human spirit.”---Martin Tucker, editor, Confrontation