Sunday, October 2, 2011

Book Review: Come, Thief

Jane Hirshfield's latest, Come, Thief, comes at the beginning of fall, at least that's what it felt like to me. There was a certain lushness in the poems, reminiscent of warm sweaters and hands laced around coffee mugs.

The poems also have an older feeling to them, like a beloved clock winding itself down after many useful years, especially in the poem "A Hand is Shaped for What it Holds or Makes." The narrator says "A life is shaped by what it holds or makes. I make these words for what they can't replace." Awe inspiring lines.

I have to say that my favorite poem in the book is "Sweater." It's a writer's poem and one that I gasped aloud when I read it.

From "Sweater"

"Lucky the one who rises to sit at a table,
day after day spilling coffee sweet with sugar, whitened with milk.
Lucky the one who writes in a book of spiral-bound mornings
a future in ink, who writes hand unshaking, warmed by thick wool."

I didn't enjoy Hirshfield's earlier works as much as this collection. She seems to have settled, in a good way, into her writing and I'm now eagerly anticipating her next book.

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