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In the Crevice of Time

Paperback
, 296 pages
ISBN:
9780801863394
May 1995
$27.00

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In the Crevice of Time

New and Collected Poems

Josephine Jacobsen's distinguished career as poet and writer spans more than six decades, from the publication of her first poem at age eleven to her 1994 American Academy of the Arts Citation, which celebrated her as a recipient of "almost every major poetry award." From 1971 to 1973 she served two terms as Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress, a post recently retitled National Poet Laureate. Now in paperback, In the Crevice of Time brings together 176 new and previously published poems by one of the most accomplished and most widely acclaimed poets of our time.

Josephine Jacobsen has published seven books of poetry, two of criticism, and three collections of short fiction. Her many awards include a 1994 Academy of the Arts citation; a 1995 nomination as a National Book Award finalist; the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize; a fellowship from the Academy of American Poets for service to poetry; and the selection of On the Island: Short Stories as one of the five nominees for the PEN-Faulkner fiction award. Other honors include a recent award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and eight inclusions of her stories in the O. Henry Prize Stories.

"The collected poems of a greatly gifted poet may not offer the suspense of a well-plotted novel, but there is still a certain drama in seeing the art of a life's work fitted between the covers of one book... The recent poems that make up the last section are some of Jacobsen's very best."

"Josephine Jacobsen's poetry... demonstrates not only scrupulous verbal craft but a kind of auditory seriousness, a preference for depth and precision over mere charm or beauty."—"

"Josephine Jacobsen's mind is exquisite and urbane, which is not to say that it has confined itself to salon conversation or academic discourse... Formal and fastidious, Jacobsen meditates on death—oh, not because she herself is aging, nothing even faintly vulgar like that—because of her apprehension of our fleshly frailty."

"Wry, meticulous, compassionate, she casts her diaphanous net over the widest range of subjects, from the dailiness of breakfast with the morning paper ('I spill coffee on a head of state') to the distant apocalypse when the cockroach ('he will be blind/not sterile') inherits the earth."

"Healthful and pure, protein and green salad for the mind."

"Josephine Jacobsen writes masterfully, consistently, and better every year. She has a superb narrative gift and she sketches the people of her world with originality, inventiveness, and rare intelligence."

"Josephine Jacobsen's quietly articulated observations have the dark resonance of great art. Her spare diction combines the passionate commitment of Louise Bogan with the precision and compactness of Elizabeth Bishop and Marianne Moore. Her best work, done in her seventies and eighties, has won her almost every major poetry award."