Jim Moore’s first career retrospective shows a poet whittling down experience to its essential confrontation with one’s own limitations, whether it be time running short, or understanding running thin, or capacity running low to think or feel or love enough. Underground gathers the best poems from across Moore’s seven previous books and includes twenty new poems. This is the definitive volume by a poet of great depth and generosity.
Brief, jagged, haiku-like, Jim Moore’s poems in Invisible Strings observe time moving past us moment by moment. In that accrual, line by line, is the anxiety and acceptance of aging, the mounting losses of friends to death or divorce, the accounting of frequent flyer miles and cups of coffee, and the poet’s own process of writing. It is a world of both diminishment and triumphs. Moore has assembled his most emotionally direct and lyrically spare collection, one that amounts to his book of days, seasons, and stark realizations.
Jim Moore’s sixth collection—loving and grief-ridden—bears down on loss and how to render it in art with clarity enough to outlast our small, brief lives. Through the anguish of a mother’s death, the ravaged beauty of foreign landscapes, and the turmoil of political misrule, these poems arrive at both elegy and celebration for human limitations.
Winner of the 2006 Minnesota Book Award for Poetry.
As its title suggests, The Long Experience of Love is, before all else, a book of love poems. Whether addressed to a specific person or evoking a memory, landscape, or the spirit of a painting, the poems honor both the presence of love and its loss. Moore writes of the common losses by which we know our lives: the loss of family, the friends who leave us, the desires that don’t come to pass. Moore’s tone is often elegiac, but it is also often ecstatic. He tells his secrets, names his pain without self-pity. These poems offer the delight of discovering that the most surprising of revelations may be sprung, the most subtle of effects achieved, by language that is immediate and accessible. The poet’s voice is easy, the music as natural as breathing.
Winner of the 1996 Minnesota Book Award for Poetry.
The Freedom of History continues Jim Moore’s focus on themes established in The New Body. Jim says,”It is the rub of history—personal and public, against the feeling of freedom and uniqueness that we experience as individuals—that inspires me to write. . . . I am interested in the times when personal and political history liberate, and the times when they oppress. But I am also drawn to the times when history, for brief intense periods, seems to disappear altogether, and we inhabit a more meditative and solitary world which gives us a very different perspective on our lives and on that world.”
Winner of the 1989 Minnesota Book Award for Poetry.
WHAT IT’S LIKE HERE
line drawings by CB Sherlock
Cedar Fence Press, 2006
MINNESOTA WRITES: POETRY
co-edited with Cary Waterman
Milkweed Editions, 1987
HOW ME MISSED BELGIUM
collaboration with Deborah Keenan
Milkweed Editions, 1984