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Habitat

New and Selected Poems, 1965-2005

264 pages / 6.00 x 9.00 inches / None

Poetry

  Hardcover / 9780807130469 / April 2005
  Paperback / 9780807130476 / April 2005

Winner of the National Book Award Finalist

A master craftsman who seamlessly combines vision and contemplation, Brendan Galvin is considered among the most powerful naturalist poets today. Habitat, Galvin's fourteenth poetry book, combines eighteen new works with lyric pieces from the past forty years—including two book-length narratives,Wampanoag Traveler and Saints in Their Ox-Hide Boat. In a voice of quiet authority leavened with humor, Galvin intimately conveys his landscapes, birds and animals, people, and weather. By elevating the commonplace to the crucial, he takes his readers very far from the familiar.

Habitat offers an opportunity to trace a remarkable poetic career. In their richly various shapes, colors, textures, and strategies, Galvin's poems bear witness to matters both joyful and intractable.

Full of noose-around-the-neck wisecracks,
you'd have been an unwilling toiler, 
envying the horse its stamina, 
the hare its jagged speed over broken 
fields, and bog cotton its deference to wind
on peatlands against blue mountains, 
where it crowds white-headed 
as ancient peasants herded off the best
grazing, enduring as if they'd do better 
as plants hoarding minerals through winter,
hairy prodigals spinning existence from clouds,
from mistfall two days out of three, the odd
shoal of sun drifting across.
—from "A Neolithic Meditation" 

Brendan Galvin is the author of fourteen poetry books, including six published by LSU Press, the most recent of which, Habitat: New and Selected Poems, 1965-2005, was a finalist for the National Book Award. He has received many other honors, including the O. B. Hardison Prize from the Folger Shakespeare Library. He lives in Truro, Massachusetts.

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