Selected Poems

ISBN: 0811211924
ISBN 13: 9780811211925
By: René Char Tina Jolas Mary Ann Caws

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About this book

The Selected Poems of Rene Char is a comprehensive, bilingual overview reflecting the poet s wide stylistic and philosophical range, from aphorism to dramatic lyricism. In making their selections, the editors have chosen the voices of seventeen poets and translators (Paul Auster, Samuel Beckett, Cid Corman, Eugene Jolas, W.S. Merwin, William Carlos Williams, and James Wright, to name a few), in homage to a writer long held in highest esteem by the literary avant-garde.

Reader's Thoughts


ive said it somewhere else i dont really understand it but its probably better not to understand this degree of sadness


I liked a lot of this, but some of it seems beyond me.


It was good, and some translations are better than others (several different people translate these poems). But overall, I have a feeling he doesn't translate well. The French versions are alongside the translations, but I do not read French. He can be incredibly abstract. I don't think these translations are bad; Mary Ann Caws has a few lovely ones, as does James Wright and several others, but some felt like a near "miss." Still, it's definately worth buying and reading. Sometimes translations grow on me over time.


Most beautiful love poem ever written and ever to be written. Check it out. you will find it.


Brilliant divests the Rimbaudian sense of the prose-poem into something more organice, something that refuses, occasionally, the meta-syntax of poetry in favor of delivering ideas, and of course, because Char is brilliant, the work still resounds the way good poetry should. I have formerly only read Leaves of Hypnos, which is truly brilliant, but also somewhat of a departure from Char's poetry as a whole with Hypnoes being closer to a journal (or something; I've always insisted that Leaves of Hypnos is very similar to Georges Bataille's Guilty).

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