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Published Date : April 10, 2012
In Wendell Berry’s upcoming New Collected Poems, the poet revisits for the first time his immensely popular Collected Poems, which The New York Times Book Review described as “a straightforward search for a life connected to the soil, for marriage as a sacrament and family life” that “affirms a style that is resonant with the authentic,” and “[returns] American poetry to a Wordsworthian clarity of purpose.”
In The New Collected Poems, Berry reprints the nearly two hundred pieces in Collected Poems, along with the poems from his most recent collections—Entries, Given, and Leavings—to create an expanded collection, showcasing the work of a man heralded by The Baltimore Sun as “a sophisticated, philosophical poet in the line descending from Emerson and Thoreau . . . a major poet of our time.”
Wendell Berry is the author of over fifty works of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction, and has been awarded numerous literary prizes, including the T. S. Eliot Award, a National Institute of Arts and Letters award for writing, the American Academy of Arts and Letters Jean Stein Award, and a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship. While he began publishing work in the 1960s, Booklist has written that “Berry has become ever more prophetic,” clearly standing up to the test of time.
WENDELL BERRY was born in Henry County, Kentucky, in 1934. He earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Kentucky in 1956 and continued on to complete a master’s degree in 1957. In 1958, he received a Wallace Stegner Fellowship from Stanford University.
Berry has taught at Stanford University, Georgetown College, New York University, the University of Cincinnati, and Bucknell University. He taught at his alma mater, the University of Kentucky from 1964-77, and again from 1987-93.
The author of more than 40 works of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, Wendell Berry has been the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship (1962), the Vachel Lindsay Prize from Poetry (1962), a Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship (1965), a National Institute of Arts and Letters award for writing (1971), the Emily Clark Balch Prize from The Virginia Quarterly Review (1974), the American Academy of Arts and Letters Jean Stein Award (1987), a Lannan Foundation Award for Non-Fiction (1989), Membership in the Fellowship of Southern Writers (1991), the Ingersoll Foundation’s T. S. Eliot Award (1994), the John Hay Award (1997), the Lyndhurst Prize (1997), and the Aitken-Taylor Award for Poetry from The Sewanee Review (1998). His books include the novel Hannah Coulter (2004), the essay collections Citizenship Papers (2005) and The Way of Ignorance (2006), and Given: Poems (2005), all available from Counterpoint. Berry’s latest works include The Mad Farmer Poems (2008) and Whitefoot (2009), which features illustrations by Davis Te Selle.
He lives and works with his wife, Tanya Berry, on their farm in Port Royal, Kentucky.
“[Berry’s poems] shine with a gentle wisdom of a craftsman who has thought deeply about the paradoxical strangeness and wonder of life.” —The Christian Science Monitor
“Wendell Berry is one of those rare individuals who speaks to us always of responsibility, of the individual cultivation of an active and aware participation in the arts of life, be they those of composing a poem, preparing a hill for planting, raising a family, working for the good of oneself and one’s neighbors, loving.” —The Bloomsbury Review
“If you’re wondering where all the sincerity has gone in contemporary poetry, you may rest assured that Wendell Berry has it.”—Bookpress
“Disarming in its apparent simplicity and powerful in its lack of guile.” —San Marcos Daily Record
“For those who believe that life and the world are gifts, this is an invaluable book.” —Booklist
“[Berry’s] sage mind and poetic skills combine to skewer political arrogance, savage commercial folly, muse on growing old and lament a good dog’s death. Mindful of time and earth, of joy and love, Berry calls us to the hard work of a hope and peace and gratitude so incarnate that they rest ‘on the ground underfoot.’” —Christian Century