Given sugar, given salt

by Jane Hirshfield

Hardcover, 2001





New York : HarperCollins Publishers, c2001.


In this luminous and authoritative new collection, Jane Hirshfield presents an ever-deepening and altering comprehension of human existence in poems utterly unique, as William Matthews once wrote of her work, in their "praise of ceaseless mutability as life's central splendor." In poems complex in meaning yet clear in statement and depiction, Hirshfield explores questions of identity, aging, death, and of time and the variegated gifts brought by its relentless passage. Whether meditating upon a button, the role of habit in our lives, or the elusive nature of our relationship to sleep, Hirshfield brings each subject into a surprising and magnified existence.

User reviews

LibraryThing member dasam
Jane Hirshfield has written better collections, but this one still resonates with her revisioning of the most commonplace of things and events into the deeply significant. When so much poetry seemingly is written to exclude the reader, Hirshfield intimately and profoundly includes us.


Local notes

Inscribed to Chris from author


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