Item description for The Empty Boat: Poems (New Odyssey) by Michael Sowder...
In finely wrought, image-driven poems, The Empty Boat explores the spiritual and aesthetic dimensions of the human relationship to the natural world, asking how nature speaks to us and what wisdom and solace it may offer the tragic aspects of our lives. From haunting poems that give voice to losses and seek redemption in wilderness, to those that celebrate ecstatic moments of mystical vision, the book's trajectory moves ever toward Taoist landscapes of thought. The book concludes with the return of love and re-imaginings of the relationship of presence and emptiness in our lives.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.8" Width: 5.8" Height: 0.3" Weight: 0.3 lbs.
Publisher Truman State University Press
ISBN 1931112452 ISBN13 9781931112451
Availability 0 units.
More About Michael Sowder
Michael Sowder is assistant professor of English at Utah State University.
Reviews - What do customers think about The Empty Boat: Poems (New Odyssey)?
A Book of Pleasures Jan 15, 2005
Michael Sowder's "The Empty Boat" carries the reader on a journey of loss, recovery, and grace. Sowder's poems record stages in an ongoing spiritual quest under the sign of the crow, Sowder's totem animal. Rooted in the natural world he knows so well, Sowder's vivid images continually take flight: " I float into sleep / at ten thousand feet, / the night giving wings to our bones," he tells the lover he has courted throughout the book, even while acknowledging the contrary urge toward solitary communion with nature. In fact, Sowder's delicate love poems leaven the terror and mystery the poet finds in nature--as when the "glittering bodies" of frozen fish turn a lake into "a jeweled cemetery, / an illuminated manuscript / we were tongueless and terrified to read" ("Luddington Beach, Lake Michigan"). Embracing sly humor, Whitmanian exuberance, and Taoist spirituality by turns, the poems in "The Empty Boat" continually delight the imagination.
Refreshing and honest Nov 22, 2004
Michael Sowder's new book of poetry, "The Empty Boat", is simply riveting. I picked it up intending to read a few pages and save the rest for another time, but I couldn't put it down until I had finished it. It is exciting reading! Well done, Michael. Well done.
a brilliant new voice Nov 10, 2004
This is easily the best new book of poetry in years. Michael Sowder guides the reader through the intricacies of the natural world and the inner life. His vivid language and haunting imagery recall James Wright and Li-Young Lee, with the narrative power of David Bottoms. This is a voice to cherish. Buy this book now. You will find the boat far from empty. Let Sowder carry you downriver with the most expert of J-strokes.
In the great tradition of American poetry Sep 27, 2004
I heard about this collection of poems from a colleague. He told me that Michael Sowder is one of the finest new poets to come out of the American romantic tradition. To be honest, I've read very little poetry of late that has moved me, so I was thirsty for something to catch my attention. I purchased "The Empty Boat" and begin reading...and reading. For the first time since I was a teenager, I have found a poet that speaks to that longing for simplicity, adventure and purity which saturate our adolesence but mysteriously dry up as we age and wear in our shoes. Sowder teaches us once again how to see the world through an innocent eye. He leads us, guides us. Indeed, he is a sort of Counselor directing us ever onward, ever forward. Bravo to Michael Sowder, the "Counselor".