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The Gift That Arrives Broken
Jacqueline Berger




Autumn House
2010 • 80 pp. 5 1/2 x 8 1/2"
Poetry

$17.95 Paperback, 978-1-932870-36-7
$9.99 Ebook, 978-1-932870-73-2

Check your ebook retailer or local library for ebook availability.



“Rich in sensory details, Jacqueline Berger’s new poems present scenarios that invite us to think about their meaning and suggest ways we should think about... [continued in Reviews below]”—Zara Raab, Colorado Review

Winner of the 2009 Autumn House Poetry Contest, selected by Alicia Ostriker.

Winner of the 2009 Autumn House Poetry Contest, selected by Alicia Ostriker. In Berger's third collection, she combines the philosophical with the everyday in order to examine a broken world.

Reviews / Endorsements

“Rich in sensory details, Jacqueline Berger’s new poems present scenarios that invite us to think about their meaning and suggest ways we should think about them, see them afresh. The poems do all this effortlessly, much as a parable might, not offering simple prudential morality à la Aesop, but demanding reflection on the earthly role of human beings, on language, on randomness and purpose in the universe. Indirectly, in thoughtful, sometimes humorous, sometimes sardonic ways, they inculcate virtue without seeming to insist or dictate.”—Zara Raab, Colorado Review

“Reading The Gift That Arrives Broken, I kept asking myself: what is the magic that makes these poems of a quiet, ordinary life, with small sensuous pleasures, and the tracking of a father’s gradual decline toward death, so compelling? Is it the understated wisdom, the graceful compassion toward the self and others, the awareness that one is always “swallowing rage,” balanced by the decision with a friend to “share dessert, but share two of them/ because we love both chocolate and plums?” Is it the precision of description, is it the amused memories of the self at sixteen, dropping acid and tearing up money, or the amused speculation about a girl with a baby at a crafts fair selling goddess magnets, “so female the air around her/ is perfumed,” and the baby’s dad, “loose as a hinged board, slow as oil…Now I want to marry both of them”? “I am trying to get to the center,” Jacqueline Berger writes, “though there is no center,/ or everywhere is.” This is an art that is centered everywhere. It brought me closer to my own center, and it will bring you, whoever you are, closer too.”—Alicia Ostriker



JACQUELINE BERGER is the author of two previous books of poetry, Things That Burn, winner of the Agha Shahid Ali Prize, University of Utah Press, and The Mythologies of Danger, winner of the Bluestem Award and the Bay Area Book Reviewers Award. Her poetry has also appeared in numerous journals including The Iowa Review, River Styx, and New Millennium Writings. She teaches creative writing and directs the graduate program in English at Notre Dame de Namur University in Belmont, California. She was born and raised in Los Angeles and now lives in San Francisco with her husband.

Click here for author's website.


Sat, 2 Dec 2017 12:23:56 -0500