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From the publisher
Intense verbal music with a jazz feeling; invention against the grain of expectation; intelligence racing among materials with the variety of a busy street - these have been the qualities of Robert Pinsky's work since his first book, "Sadness and Happiness" (1975), celebrated for setting a new direction in American poetry. At that time, responding to a question about that book, Pinsky said: "I would like to write a poetry which could contain every kind of thing, while keeping all the excitement of poetry". That ambition was realized in a new way with each of his books, including the book-length personal monologue "An Explanation of America"; the transformed autobiography of "History of My Heart"; the bestselling translation "The Inferno of Dante"; and, most recently, the savage, inventive "Gulf Music". This volume contains a selection of poems from Pinsky's career to demonstrate that variety and renewal with fresh clarity.