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Skating on the Sea: Poetry from Finland Paperback – 1 Aug 1997

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 2.0 out of 5 stars 1 review
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Surely not a representative sample... 6 Jan. 2002
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was in search of a comprehensive anthology of Finnish poetry, and, in that sense, found this book quite disappointing. The youngest anthologized poets, Claes Andersson and Pentti Saarikoski, were born in 1937. In the preface, the editor states that "an anthologist must stop somewhere: I chose to stop at the latest poet to attract wide international attention". Surely there must be some Finns under 64 years old writing poetry that deserve being anthologized and translated, regardless of fame??? After reading this book, I don't really feel as if I had gained a deeper awareness of Finnish poetical tendencies, or of writers currently active in that country. I believe that some really dismal nineteenth-century pieces, as well as one frankly ugly Futurist poem whose interest can't be other than historical, might have been exchanged by work by younger writers. As it is,there is a gap in the anthology that prevents it from being a sample of Finnish poetry since its beginnings. Also, I would have appreciated more biographical info on the featured poets.
On the purely aesthetical side, bravo to Bloodaxe Books for a nice edition (the painting on the cover is superb). It's a pity that the contents were not as satisfying.
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