These twenty-seven poems consider life on earth, from the microbe to the apocalypse. Along the way they take in, among other objects of study, the human teenager, divorce, Ella Fitzgerald, Vermeer's Milkmaid, dreams, traffic accidents, Greek statues, television miniseries, the vagaries of memory, Madame Atropos, and even poetry writing. A book to treasure, from a virtuoso of form, line, and thought.
PRAISE FOR WISLAWA SZYMBORSKA
"Accessible and deeply human . . . A poet to live with." --Robert Hass
"She teaches us how the world defies and evades the names we give it." --Edward Hirsch
"A subtle, even a subversive muse of vulnerability and a great European poet." --Richard Howard
"Satisfying and original . . . Extremely smart, witty, and levelheaded, Szymborska] seduces us with her wide range of interests, her atypical lack of narcissism for a poet, and her cheerful pessimism." --Charles Simic