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Necessary Angel

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Necessary Angel

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    Available in PDF Format | Necessary Angel.pdf | English
    Wallace Stevens(Author)
In this collection of essays, consummate poet Wallace Stevens reflects upon his art. His aim is not to produce a work of criticism or philosophy, or a mere discussion of poetic technique. As he explains in his introduction, his ambition in these various pieces, published in different times and places, aimed higher than that, in the direction of disclosing "poetry itself, the naked poem, the imagination manifesting itself in its domination of words." Stevens proves himself as eloquent and scintillating in prose as in poetry, as he both analyzes and demonstrates the essential act of repossessing reality through the imagination.

"In this book, the first collection of his prose works, he accounts in scintillating language for the peculiarly modern and sometimes deliquescent fervor that has prompted his poems. Few poets have written so characteristically about their own craft." --Perspective --U.S.A. "These are rich essays, simply constructed yet richly and elegantly written." -- Hayden Carruth, The Nation "The most welcome attribute of the book is its humane good sense, equally manifest whether Stevens is discussing a desolate Pennsylvania churchyard. Plato's images or the personalities of those who prefer a drizzle in Venice to a hard rain in Hartford.''' --New Republic "It is a rare pleasure to breathe the atmosphere of confidence and wholeness which distinguishes the world of Wallace Stevens. Here we are refreshed by certainty without fragmentariness, by joyous possibilities without dishonesty. Here we find a moral and philosophical center through which reality may be repossessed and re-created with each new poetic act." -- C. Roland Wagner, The Hudson Review"Few poets have written so characteristically about their own craft." --Perspective-U.S.A. "These are rich essays, simply constructed yet richly and elegantly written." -- Hayden Carruth, The Nation "The most welcome attribute of the book is its humane good sense, equally manifest whether Stevens is discussing a desolate Pennsylvania churchyard, Plato's images or the personalities of those who prefer 'a drizzle in Venice to a hard rain in Hartford.''' --New Republic "It is a rare pleasure to breathe the atmosphere of confidence and wholeness which distinguishes the world of Wallace Stevens. Here we are refreshed by certainty without fragmentariness, by joyous possibilities without dishonesty. Here we find a moral and philosophical center through which reality may be repossessed and re-created with each new poetic act." -- The Hudson Review

3.2 (10341)
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Book details

  • PDF | 192 pages
  • Wallace Stevens(Author)
  • Random House USA Paperbacks (Feb. 1965)
  • English
  • 4
  • Poetry, Drama & Criticism
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Review Text

  • By BioDiplomacy on 21 July 2013

    Wallace Stevens is the great poet of the faculty of the imagination. Here, as an essayist, he takes us canoeing down its river on a journey where one needs to follow every bend, attentive to the sounds and sights on either bank, but always careful to steer accurately, aware of the dangers of capsizing. His prose, like his poetry, is dense with detail and tingling with excitement. But this is the canoe, his poetry is the river. He insists, in the first of "Three Academic Pieces", that "The accuracy of accurate letters is an accuracy with respect to the structure of reality." One way to formulate an "accurate theory of poetry" is "to examine one of the significant components of the the structure of reality - that is to say, the resemblance between things."This idea becomes the poetry of the second piece, "Someone Puts a Pineapple Together":He must say nothing of the fruit that isNot true, nor think it, less. He must defyThe metaphor that murders metaphor.The third piece, "Of Ideal Time and Choice",is why I treasure this collection of seven essays that were - all but one - written to be spoken to live audiences. (Oh, to have been one of the auditors!). It contains this passage of reflective honesty, stunning even when plucked out untimely from the poem in which is is embedded:"And old men who have chosen, and are coldBecause what they have chosen is their choiceNo more..."

  • By Frank 9 on 1 March 2016

    This profound & elegant little book arrived in no time and in perfect condition. For anyone interested in contemplative poetry that circles beautifully in explorations of aesthetics and metaphysics, this book is a detailed thoughtful essay on the subject by the master of that kind of poetry . Stevens prose style is as polished and pointed as his poetry.

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