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The Opposite of Letting the Mind Wander: Selected Poems and a Few Songs

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Poetry. " All of Waldrop's work evokes the conflict between activity and passivity, doing and being, poetry as discovery and poetry as invention. In fact, reading Waldrop gives the reader two impressions, often in rapid succession: that of participating in a desperate search for a lost and possibly non-existent item; and that of sitting still, trying to be so quiet a tiny voice will reach one from a distance. The energy in these poems goes into the effort of thought, of meditation, not into the lines. Like Wallace Stevens in his early long poems (and like any phenomenologist) Waldrop strips perceptions of accretions so that they can be seen in their first light, without falsification. The effect is in both cases a poem that is smooth flowing on the surface but dense with effort and energy underneath" - Janet McCann, Parnassus: Poetry in Review. Hide synopsis

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