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A lyrical search for wisdom and meaning in the life of a man growing up in the New South of desegregating schools, rock-and-roll music, mobile populations, and volatile wars, Little Boats, Unsalvaged displays the profound historical sensibility that has long marked the poetry of Dave Smith. Smith exhibits here a mature perspective on his childhood in a racially violent society and on his troubled search for happiness, whether sexual, professional, or aesthetic. To that, he adds a chorus of elegies for poets central to his understanding of his native region- including Edwin Muir, Robert Penn Warren, and Allen Tate- and a vision of poetry as the art that unites medieval and contemporary elements. Section by section, changes in subject, tempo, and even vocabulary offer at once a sense of unity and variety to the poems. Little Boats, Unsalvaged poses a polyphonic inquiry into the experiences and memories of the Vietnam-defined generation, an inquiry whose answers can only be tentative, fretted, hung in the contingencies of being just as the little boat of joy waits- not useless or lost, but abandoned and so beyond visible redemption.
|Publication date:||20th October 2020|
|Publisher:||Louisiana State University Press|
|Format:||Paperback / softback|
|Categories:||Poetry by individual poets,|
Dave Smith, Elliot Coleman Professor of Poetry and chairman of the Writing Seminars at the Johns Hopkins University, is the author of twenty books of poetry, fiction, criticism, and memoir. Recipient of the Dictionary of Literary Biography Yearbook Award for Most Distinguished Volume of Poetry for The Wick of Memory: New and Selected Poems, 1970- 2000, he has won fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Guggenheim Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Lyndhurst Foundation. Smith lives with his wife in Baltimore.More About Dave Smith