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Nine Horses

Poems

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Paperback published by Random House Trade Paperbacks (Random House Publishing Group)

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About This Book
Nine Horses, Billy Collins’s first book of new poems since Picnic, Lightning in 1998, is the latest curve in the phenomenal trajectory of this poet’s career. Already in his forties when he debuted with a full-length book, The Apple That Astonished Paris, Collins has become the first poet since Robert Frost to combine high critical acclaim with broad popular appeal. And, as if to crown this success, he was appointed Poet Laureate of the United States for 2001–2002, and reappointed for 2002–2003.

What accounts for this remarkable achievement is the poems themselves, quiet meditations grounded in everyday life that ascend effortlessly into eye-opening imaginative realms. These new poems, in which Collins continues his delicate negotiations between the clear and the mysterious, the comic and the elegiac, are sure to sustain and increase his audience of avid readers.


From the Hardcover edition.
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Nine Horses, Billy Collins’s first book of new poems since Picnic, Lightning in 1998, is the latest curve in the phenomenal trajectory of this poet’s career. Already in his forties when he debuted with a full-length book, The Apple That Astonished Paris, Collins has become the first poet since Robert Frost to combine high critical acclaim with broad popular appeal. And, as if to crown this success, he was appointed Poet Laureate of the United States for 2001–2002, and reappointed for 2002–2003.

What accounts for this remarkable achievement is the poems themselves, quiet meditations grounded in everyday life that ascend effortlessly into eye-opening imaginative realms. These new poems, in which Collins continues his delicate negotiations between the clear and the mysterious, the comic and the elegiac, are sure to sustain and increase his audience of avid readers.


From the Hardcover edition.
Product Details
Paperback (144 pages)
Published: October 14, 2003
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Imprint: Random House Trade Paperbacks
ISBN: 9780375755200
Other books byBilly Collins
  • Aimless Love

    Aimless Love
    New and Selected Poems
    NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER “America’s favorite poet.”—The Wall Street Journal From the two-term Poet Laureate of the United States Billy Collins comes his first volume of new and selected poems in twelve years. Aimless Love combines fifty new poems with generous selections from his four most recent books—Nine Horses, The Trouble with Poetry, Ballistics, and Horoscopes for the Dead. Collins’s unmistakable voice, which brings together plain speech with imaginative surprise, is clearly heard on every page, reminding us how he has managed to enrich the tapestry of contemporary poetry and greatly expand its audience. His work is featured in top literary magazines such as The New Yorker, Poetry, and The Atlantic, and he sells out reading venues all across the country. Appearing regularly in The Best American Poetry series, his poems appeal to readers and live audiences far and wide and have been translated into more than a dozen languages. By turns playful, ironic, and serious, Collins’s poetry captures the nuances of everyday life while leading the reader into zones of inspired wonder. In the poet’s own words, he hopes that his poems “begin in Kansas and end in Oz.” Touching on the themes of love, loss, joy, and poetry itself, these poems showcase the best work of this “poet of plenitude, irony, and Augustan grace” (The New Yorker). Envoy   Go, little book, out of this house and into the world,   carriage made of paper rolling toward town bearing a single passenger beyond the reach of this jittery pen and far from the desk and the nosy gooseneck lamp.   It is time to decamp, put on a jacket and venture outside, time to be regarded by other eyes, bound to be held in foreign hands.   So off you go, infants of the brain, with a wave and some bits of fatherly advice:   stay out as late as you like, don’t bother to call or write, and talk to as many strangers as you can. Praise for Aimless Love   “[Billy Collins] is able, with precious few words, to make me cry. Or laugh out loud. He is a remarkable artist. To have such power in such an abbreviated form is deeply inspiring.”—J. J. Abrams, The New York Times Book Review   “His work is poignant, straightforward, usually funny and imaginative, also nuanced and surprising. It bears repeated reading and reading aloud.”—The Plain Dealer   “Collins has earned almost rock-star status. . . . He knows how to write layered, subtly witty poems that anyone can understand and appreciate—even those who don’t normally like poetry. . . . The Collins in these pages is distinctive, evocative, and knows how to make the genre fresh and relevant.”—The Christian Science Monitor   “Collins’s new poems contain everything you've come to expect from a Billy Collins poem. They stand solidly on even ground, chiseled and unbreakable. Their phrasing is elegant, the humor is alive, and the speaker continues to stroll at his own pace through the plainness of American life.”—The Daily Beast   “[Collins’s] poetry presents simple observations, which create a shared experience between Collins and his readers, while further revealing how he takes life’s everyday humdrum experiences and makes them vibrant.”—The Times Leader

    The Trouble with Poetry

    The Trouble with Poetry
    And Other Poems
    Playfulness, spare elegance, and wit epitomize the poetry of Billy Collins. With his distinct voice and accessible language, America’s two-term Poet Laureate has opened the door to poetry for countless people for whom it might otherwise remain closed. Like the present book’s title, Collins’s poems are filled with mischief, humor, and irony, “Poetry speaks to all people, it is said, but here I would like to address / only those in my own time zone”–but also with quiet observation, intense wonder, and a reverence for the everyday: “The birds are in their trees, / the toast is in the toaster, / and the poets are at their windows. / They are at their windows in every section of the tangerine of earth–the Chinese poets looking up at the moon, / the American poets gazing out / at the pink and blue ribbons of sunrise.” Through simple language, Collins shows that good poetry doesn’t have to be obscure or incomprehensible, qualities that are perhaps the real trouble with most “serious” poetry: “By now, it should go without saying / that what the oven is to the baker / and the berry-stained blouse to the drycleaner / so the window is to the poet.” In this dazzling new collection, his first in three years, Collins explores boyhood, jazz, love, the passage of time, and, of course, writing–themes familiar to Collins’s fans but made new here. Gorgeous, funny, and deeply empathetic, Billy Collins’s poetry is a window through which we see our lives as if for the first time. From the Hardcover edition.

    The Best American Poetry 2006

    The Best American Poetry 2006
    Series Editor David Lehman
    "So welcome, readers, to a plurality of poets, a cornucopia of tropes, and a range of interests." -- From Billy Collins's introduction The Best American Poetry series offers a distinguished poet's selection of poems published in the course of a year. The guest editor for 2006 is Billy Collins, one of our most beloved poets, who has chosen poems of wit, humor, imagination, and surprise, in an array of styles and forms. The result is a celebration of the pleasures of poetry -- from Laura Cronk's marvelous "Sestina for the Newly Married" to the elegant limericks of R. S. Gwynn and from Reb Livingston on butter to Mark Halliday's "Refusal to Notice Beautiful Women." In his charming and candid introduction Collins explains how he chose seventy-five poems from among the thousands he considered. With insightful comments from the poets illuminating their work, and series editor David Lehman's thought-provoking foreword, The Best American Poetry 2006 is a brilliant addition to a series that links the most noteworthy verse and prose poems of our time to a readership as discerning as it is devoted to the art of poetry.

    Ballistics

    Ballistics
    Poems
    In this moving and playful collection, Billy Collins touches on an array of subjects—love, death, solitude, youth, and aging—delving deeper than ever before into the intricate folds of life.

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