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The Track the Whales Make: New and Selected Poems (Ted Kooser Contemporary Poetry) (Paperback)
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2022 High Plains Book Award Winner in Poetry
Marjorie Saiser’s strong, clear language makes the reader feel at home in her poems. Dealing with all the ways love goes right and wrong, this collection honors the challenges of holding firm to who we really are, as well as our connections to the natural world.
The Track the Whales Make includes poems from Saiser’s seven previous books, along with new ones. Her poetry originates from the everyday things we might overlook in the hurry of our daily routines, giving us a chance to stop and appreciate the little things, while wrapped in her comforting diction. Because the poems come from ordinary life, there is humor alongside happiness and sadness, the mixed bag we survive or create, day by day.
About the Author
Marjorie Saiser is the author of seven previous books of poetry and coeditor of two anthologies. Her most recent books are Learning to Swim, The Woman in the Moon (Backwaters, 2018), and I Have Nothing to Say about Fire (Backwaters, 2016).
“Marjorie Saiser is a poet of ephemera, a poet who looks east at sunset to watch subtle light changing: ‘The glow is, and then is gone.’ And so is everyone and everything we love. Saiser tells this truth: ‘Every last thing is transitory.’ She looks at the difficult moments, at the precious fleeting moments: ‘That’s what it was like, though there is no record of it. / Let me be the record of it.’ When a whale’s flukes slip underwater, a trace shimmers for a fraction of a liquid second. That’s the moment of Saiser’s poetry, a poetry of generations of profound compassion, passed down.”—Peggy Shumaker, author of Cairn
“Marjorie Saiser’s poetry is wise and generous and altogether genuine. No poet in this country is better at writing about love, and, in a sense, all of her poems are in some way about love.”—Ted Kooser, U.S. poet laureate, 2004–2006
“Marjorie Saiser writes, ‘I wanted / the luminous coin, big sky over rooftops, / the celestial and the neighborhood.’ In these pages she finds both and gives them to us in an extraordinary volume of new and selected poems. With one poem, ‘Charmed by the Dirt Road,’ she explains generations of women. I move from delight to tears reading these brilliant, compassionate, and beautifully wrought poems. Saiser is a great poet.”—Hilda Raz, author of Letter from a Place I’ve Never Been: New and Collected Poems, 1986–2020