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The Winged Energy of Delight: Selected Translations Hardcover – 1 Jun 2004

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 406 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers; 1st Edition edition (Jun. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060575824
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060575823
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 3.3 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,212,112 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Robert Bly (born December 23, 1926) is an American poet, author, activist and leader of the mythopoetic men's movement, most famous for his Iron John: A Book About Men (1990), which spent 62 weeks on the The New York Times Best Seller list. For The Light Around the Body he won the 1968 National Book Award for Poetry. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.


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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Robert Bly's value and weight as a poet is remarkable. Whether he's one of your favorite American poets or not, Bly must be profusely acknowledged for his contribution to poetry in two distinct areas: as a devoted advocate of poetry itself, introducing others -particularly people who may not have called themselves lovers of poetry, to begin with- to the most exquisite form of "making language."
Secondly, as a bridge to what the book has to offer, Bly has given us access to a wealth of seminal poets, encompassing an ambitious entry to poetry's history and breadth of epiphanies, through his translations.
In any anthology, particularly when poetry is the matter at hand, the likelihood for disappointments is great. As the reviewer before stated, there are exclusions here that may seem inexplicable. Yet, what you must appreciate are the gems which were included since I don't believe that there's a single poem here which does not deserve its inclusion.
I would have liked, of course, more poems altogether -particularly from Rilke and Neruda since Bly has translated a fair amount of their extensive works- yet I suggest that you come to this book as a generous "sampler" of great world poetry.
In my case, I already own each book of translations these poems come from, so I bought it to have as a "traveling companion." In your case, you may regard it as the beginning of a friendship with some poets from different times and cultures, and as some of them speak particularly to you, you ought to get Bly's complete translations of poets.
Finally, specially for those among you not familiar yet with Bly's translating style, if not a warning a certain clarification may be useful. There are fundamentally two types of great translators -of course there are many more bad ones in both camps.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x8b95a648) out of 5 stars 13 reviews
28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8b7d0bac) out of 5 stars A Book of Wonders 23 July 2004
By Juan Mobili - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Robert Bly's value and weight as a poet is remarkable. Whether he's one of your favorite American poets or not, Bly must be profusely acknowledged for his contribution to poetry in two distinct areas: as a devoted advocate of poetry itself, introducing others -particularly people who may not have called themselves lovers of poetry, to begin with- to the most exquisite form of "making language."
Secondly, as a bridge to what the book has to offer, Bly has given us access to a wealth of seminal poets, encompassing an ambitious entry to poetry's history and breadth of epiphanies, through his translations.
In any anthology, particularly when poetry is the matter at hand, the likelihood for disappointments is great. As the reviewer before stated, there are exclusions here that may seem inexplicable. Yet, what you must appreciate are the gems which were included since I don't believe that there's a single poem here which does not deserve its inclusion.
I would have liked, of course, more poems altogether -particularly from Rilke and Neruda since Bly has translated a fair amount of their extensive works- yet I suggest that you come to this book as a generous "sampler" of great world poetry.
In my case, I already own each book of translations these poems come from, so I bought it to have as a "traveling companion." In your case, you may regard it as the beginning of a friendship with some poets from different times and cultures, and as some of them speak particularly to you, you ought to get Bly's complete translations of poets.
Finally, specially for those among you not familiar yet with Bly's translating style, if not a warning a certain clarification may be useful. There are fundamentally two types of great translators -of course there are many more bad ones in both camps.
In one hand, there are translators whose devotion to the original is expressed by their faithful concern with conveying the original meaning, at times, at the expense of cadence or the temporal/cultural distance between poet and reader.
Others, very much the case with Bly's approach, conveying the essence of a poem means taking certain liberties with the original, not as much as an absence of loyalty to the poet's words but out of the uttermost passion to have you be touched by the essence of their poetic vision. For instance, Rilke is more "American" and "contemporary" here that it may be in Stephen Mitchell's translations -which are just as stunning in their own ways.
I appreciate Bly's work even when, like in the Spanish-speaking poets' case which I can read in the original, I may not agree with certain choices he's made. To read poetry is to interpret it, the ultimate gift of a great poem -maybe even a test of greatness as much as a gift- is its capacity to deeply move people in completely different ways. That's where poetry's power lies, so it'd be unfair to consider the translator any more permeable and subjective than any given reader.
Come to these poems to be changed, to be taught to see even more widely and deeply that you may already have. I'm sure Ghalib, Transtromer, or Miguel Hernandez would agree with that.
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
... but I am mystified by the fact that some of his best translations are not in the book. "Sexual Waters" by Neruda, to take one glaring example. Some of the better Transtromer. Some of the Rilke. Smaller type with more translations would have been better, maybe--or else, a longer book.
Bly's translations have been attacked, of course, as not being wholly accurate. But who cares? They are magnificent versions, wonderful poems that stand wholly on their own.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8b7d0a8c) out of 5 stars Robert Bly, National Treasure 21 Aug. 2007
By Brian Donohue - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Bly is a giant of American literature, mostly because he never tried to be one. His translations are humble and luminous, his own poems are treasures, and his energy is always truly "winged". Read the poems in this volume aloud to your children, your animals, and anyone or anything else that will hear them with you.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8b7d21e0) out of 5 stars Great Poetry Compilation 26 Mar. 2007
By Bradley Spencer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Having seen Robert Bly speak, I was intriqued by what he does when it'd just him and a typewriter. Well, he's doing something right.

You may know the big name Poets in this book- Rumi, Ghalib, Rilke... but there are so many new and emerging (in popularity) poets here to read and enjoy.

It's a stunning collection of some of Bly's best translation and a wonderful display of his mastery of the written word.

Write, Bly, Write.
HASH(0x8b7d2324) out of 5 stars A book to keep 28 Aug. 2015
By Kinder teacher - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I have a bookshelf full of poetry books. If I had to keep one book of translations, it would be this one. If you are new to poetry - this is your book. If you have already read many of the poets translated in this book - this is your book. You can read other reviews here for analysis of Bly's translation style. I've had this book for years, and am buying it now for a gift.
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