Jane Hirshfield

Jane Hirshfield’s poetry has been described as generous, insightful and “sensuously philosophical.” The Bay Area-based poet recently published two books, a book of poetry called “The Beauty” and a collection of essays titled “Ten Windows: How Great Poems Transform the World.” She joins us to talk about her latest work and her continuing discoveries about the power of poetry.

Jane Hirshfield, poet, translator, essayist and author most recently of "The Beauty" and the essay collection "Ten Windows: How Great Poems Transform the World"

  • Kevin A. Madden

    Heck. I’ll comment here because I feel lucky to have known this.

    Some of us got the reference from the first poem she read, “There is no other life.”

    “Why Log Truck Drivers Rise Earlier Than Students Of ZEN”

    In the high seat, before dawn dark,
    Polished hubs gleam
    And the shiny diesel stack
    Warms and flutters
    Up the Tyler Road grade
    To the logging in Poorman creek.
    Thirty miles of dust.
    There is no other life.

    – Gary Snyder

  • Rick Carr

    “Dulce et Decorum Est” was my favorite in the anti war vein, along with “The Death of the Turret Ball Gunner”.

  • 1PeterDuMont2STARALLIANCE8

    Buried in the rather long reflective poem, Locksley Hall, by Alfred Lord Tennyson in 1842, are lines that have given hope to many, including me, for the political and cultural future of the world:

    “For I dipt into the future, far as human eye could see,
    Saw the Vision of the world, and all the wonder that would be…
    …Far along the world-wide whisper of the south-wind rushing warm,
    With the standards of the peoples plunging thro’ the thunder-storm;
    Till the war-drum throbb’d no longer, and the battle-flags were furl’d
    In the Parliament of man, the Federation of the world.

    There the common sense of most shall hold a fretful realm in awe
    And the kindly earth shall slumber, lapt in universal law…”

  • Patricia

    Daddy by Sylvia Plath moved my world as a young teen. My father was this man, maybe not a true Nazi but extremely abusive and hungry for power. Just to know there was someone else out there in the world who felt like this meant the world to me.

    There’s a stake in your fat black heart
    And the villagers never liked you.
    They are dancing and stamping on you.
    They always knew it was you.
    Daddy, daddy, you bastard, I’m through.

  • Chris French

    I was transfixed listening to the author read her poem “My Skeleton” on the
    car radio this morning. Beautiful and powerful stuff. Thank you for having her on your show.

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