Collected and Last Poems

Book - 2015
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A new collected volume from the Nobel Prize-winning poet that includes, for the first time in English, all of the poems from her last Polish collection

One of Europe's greatest recent poets is also its wisest, wittiest, and most accessible. Nobel Prize-winner Wislawa Szymborska draws us in with her unexpected, unassuming humor. Her elegant, precise poems pose questions we never thought to ask. "If you want the world in a nutshell," a Polish critic remarks, "try Szymborska." But the world held in these lapidary poems is larger than the one we thought we knew.

Carefully edited by her longtime, award-winning translator, Clare Cavanagh, the poems in Map trace Szymborska's work until her death in 2012. Of the approximately two hundred and fifty poems included here, nearly forty are newly translated; thirteen represent the entirety of the poet's last Polish collection, Enough , never before published in English.
Map is the first English publication of Szymborska's work since the acclaimed Here, and it offers her devoted readers a welcome return to her "ironic elegance" ( The New Yorker ).
Publisher: Boston : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2015.
ISBN: 9780544126022
Characteristics: xiv, 447 pages ; 24 cm


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Oct 03, 2018

Here is a wonderful collection of little gems, brilliantly translated, capturing the humor, grace and mood of the Polish. There are engaging vignettes from everyday life such as "Pursuit", a relationship with one's shadow; "Writing a Résumé", "Receiver" dreaming of being awoken by the phone, "The Railway Station" about a non-arrival; and most charming of all "A Little Girl Tugging at the Tablecloth" a small child's exploration of her world. Szymborska explores the writer's dilemma in "An Idea" and "To My Own Poem". And who could resist the intimate whimsy of "Flagrance", lovers "with eyelids as our only cover".
Finally, huge congratulation to the translators Clare Cavanaugh and Stanislaw Baranczak for their astonishing translation of "The Onion", a witty piece of linguistic drollery:
The onion, now that's something else.
Its innards don't exist.
Nothing but pure onionhood
fills this devout onionist.
Oniony on the inside,
onionesque it appears ....
and so it goes. The rest of it is not to be missed.
It's no mystery that Wislawa Szymborska was awarded the Nobel Prize. Too bad her work is not more widely known in the english speaking world. many thanks to our fearless translaters for enabling us to enjoy Szymborska's poetry.


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