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A Thousand Mornings: Poems Paperback – 24 Sep 2013

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Product details

  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books; Reprint edition (24 Sept. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0143124056
  • ISBN-13: 978-0143124054
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 0.7 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 39,064 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

The New York Times"-bestselling collection of poems from celebrated poet Mary Oliver In "A Thousand Mornings," Mary Oliver returns to the imagery that has come to define her life's work, transporting us to the marshland and coastline of her bel"

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Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By winifred browne on 28 Feb. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A really wonderful, lush book with all of Mary Oliver's best and most generous writing - the edge of mystery in the Fox poem - the ever present sense of the Divine and the illuminations of her faith. I loved this book and keep it by my bedside. Thank you.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Iain Wilkie on 21 Mar. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I guess we've been spoilt by her earlier fantastic work, but these poems mainly repeat old themes without the light or depth of before.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Doris West on 13 Mar. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Fans of Mary Oliver's work wait eagerly for news of new publications but this was a complete rip off...not good.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 150 reviews
91 of 95 people found the following review helpful
Humble, inquisitive, creative, mystical Mary Oliver 13 Oct. 2012
By Thomas E. Defreitas - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
There is one complaint to be made about A Thousand Mornings: it is far too short -- 80 pages, and many of those pages are blank. However, when the pages are not blank, we are drawn into the world of Mary Oliver, and it is a world from which we do not eagerly depart!

The book opens with the wry humor of "I Go Down to the Shore," and moves from there to the Roethkean questionings of "I Happened to Be Standing": "But I thought, of the wren's singing, what could this be if it isn't a prayer?" There are several one-paragraph prose poems of "earth-praise," which will entice those readers who are willing to be enticed. There is a dialogue with a fox, resumed from earlier books, and a nod to Bob Dylan, expanding on one of the book's epigraphs, Dylan's words: "Anything worth thinking about is also worth singing about." Oliver speaks of growth in the midst of devastation in the poem "Hurricane"; and this reader smiled at "Three Things to Remember," even if the poem was too baldly "proverbial."

The change of the seasons, summer to autumn, is depicted in "Lines Written in the Days of Growing Darkness," although to be sure, there is metaphoric darkness:

So let us go on, cheerfully enough,
this and every crisping day,

though the sun be swinging east,
and the ponds be cold and black,
and the sweets of the year be doomed.

The title poem, "A Thousand Mornings," is a prose-poem of a single sentence, but we do not indict the poem for brevity, when it speaks of "mak[ing] its way however it can over the rough ground of uncertainties, but only until night meets and then is overwhelmed by morning, the light deepening, the wind easing..."

Centrally placed, and perhaps the central achievement of the book, is the sequence "Hum, Hum" -- ostensibly about a swarm of bees, but probing into the personal life of the narrator:

That child was myself, that kept running away
to the also running creek,
to colt's foot and trilliams,
to the effortless prattle of the birds.

Section 4 of the poem, a section which bears the title "Of the Father" contains the narrator's revelation of a deep trauma suffered in childhood, a trauma which Oliver describes tersely, undramatically, and devastatingly.

The lovely litany in section 6 of "Hum, Hum" would be a compendium of the anodynes to pains suffered by the poet, and also an antidote to any readerly "disappointment."

Thomas Merton, we feel, would applaud Oliver's prose-poem "I Have Decided": a brief apologia for the contemplative life. There are poems about William Blake, black snakes, and "the way of the world" -- a carnivorous and (if I may) piscivorous world. There is a poem against "Extending the Airport Runway" and a poem of dismay at the news presented by "The Morning Paper": some readers, even those favorably disposed to Oliver, might fairly describe these protests as routine.

But there are apt rewards for the reader willing to find them, from "the thrush singing in the glowing woods" to the sea which "can rise, ebb, froth, like an incoming frenzy of fountains."

As noted in the beginning of this review, we might have cause to complain of brevity -- the apothegmatic brevity of some of the poems, or of the modest size of the book as a whole -- but such complaints are out of court when we enter the world of humble, inquisitive, creative Mary Oliver: the spiritual heiress to the great poet-mystics Whitman, Blake, and Roethke -- Mary Oliver, a poet who resembles no one as much as she resembles herself. I recommend this book highly.
26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
Morning Paper 13 Dec. 2012
By Patricia Kramer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I loved the nature poems in this volume, and the two about Oliver's dog, but the one I want to highlight stood out and uniquely spoke to me and it is about neither of those.

The Morning Paper

Read one newspaper daily (the morning edition
is the best
for by evening you know that you at least
have lived through another day)
and let the disasters, the unbelievable
yet approved decisions,
soak in.

I don't need to name the countries,
ours among them.

What keeps us from falling down, our faces
to the ground;ashamed, ashamed?
26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
Once Again with Wonder 17 Oct. 2012
By Yours Truly - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I greet any new volume from Mary Oliver eagerly, and this one is particularly fine. It seems tinged with a certain autumnal somberness. For the uninitiated, Oliver writes primarily about the natural world around her home in Provincetown, Massachusetts. (I'm taking "Lines Written in Days of Growing Darkness" to a solstice celebration.) But there are also poems here about her family, about the news and travel and about the demise of her endearing dog, Percy.

This is the first time I've downloaded poetry to my Kindle, and I am eager to see if I read it more often this way.
29 of 35 people found the following review helpful
Mary Oliver fans will love it, but it is a bit thin 18 Nov. 2012
By Isadore Ann - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I enjoyed this book, but I do relate to the reviews who also said there was a lot of blank pages and white space. There isn't the stand out poems that have been present in some of her earlier books, and this book probably wouldn't have been printed if she were any other writer. It's a bit thin on content and even on those concrete images that have been present in some of her earlier books. Still, this one will make a nice addition for the fan of poetry or of Oliver.

I gave this three stars because, while I'm a huge fan of Oliver's and did enjoy it, I didn't LOVE it. Does that mean it's a bad book? Not at all. In fact, if you're an Oliver fan, you're happy that she's still putting out books in her iconic style.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Armchair companion between 2 covers. 2 Jun. 2013
By Mary j Smith - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a book I keep beside me, day and night. For an instant connection to Mother Earth. I randomly open it and read whatever is in front of me. Mary Oliver is a one of a kind human/poet, who can say in her excellent choice of words, what so many of us feel. Thank you, Mary Oliver.
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