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The one hundred and fifty-six poems here, arranged in twelve sections and introduced by E. E. Cummings's biographer, include his most popular poems, spanning his earliest creations, his vivacious linguistic acrobatics, up to his last valedictory sonnets. Also featured are thirteen drawings, oils, and watercolors by Cummings, most of them never before published. The selectio The one hundred and fifty-six poems here, arranged in twelve sections and introduced by E. E. Cummings's biographer, include his most popular poems, spanning his earliest creations, his vivacious linguistic acrobatics, up to his last valedictory sonnets. Also featured are thirteen drawings, oils, and watercolors by Cummings, most of them never before published. The selection includes most of the favorites plus many fresh and surprising examples of Cummings's several poetic styles. The corrected texts established by George J. Firmage have been used throughout.


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The one hundred and fifty-six poems here, arranged in twelve sections and introduced by E. E. Cummings's biographer, include his most popular poems, spanning his earliest creations, his vivacious linguistic acrobatics, up to his last valedictory sonnets. Also featured are thirteen drawings, oils, and watercolors by Cummings, most of them never before published. The selectio The one hundred and fifty-six poems here, arranged in twelve sections and introduced by E. E. Cummings's biographer, include his most popular poems, spanning his earliest creations, his vivacious linguistic acrobatics, up to his last valedictory sonnets. Also featured are thirteen drawings, oils, and watercolors by Cummings, most of them never before published. The selection includes most of the favorites plus many fresh and surprising examples of Cummings's several poetic styles. The corrected texts established by George J. Firmage have been used throughout.

30 review for Selected Poems

  1. 5 out of 5

    Kirstine

    "since feeling is first who pays any attention to the syntax of things will never wholly kiss you;" It's a stroke of luck that this is the first E.E. Cummings book I'd get my hands on, seeing as it contains small introductions by Richard S. Kennedy. Without those introductions I would have been lost. Honestly. As much as I have relished and soaked myself in Cummings' poetry, I could as easily have drowned and never been found. I am thankful I didn't. There are some of his poems I simply don't get, "since feeling is first who pays any attention to the syntax of things will never wholly kiss you;" It's a stroke of luck that this is the first E.E. Cummings book I'd get my hands on, seeing as it contains small introductions by Richard S. Kennedy. Without those introductions I would have been lost. Honestly. As much as I have relished and soaked myself in Cummings' poetry, I could as easily have drowned and never been found. I am thankful I didn't. There are some of his poems I simply don't get, and some it took me very long to decipher. To the untrained eye some of what he writes is absolute gibberish. And some I'm not sure I'll ever train my eye well enough to make sense of, which is why I'm only giving this otherwise amazing book 4 stars. I don't really dig having my poetry-readings resemble a National Treasure movie. BUT, when I get E.E. Cummings (sometimes more easily than others) I love him, and I think his style and his insights are works of genius. I am particularly in love with how he uses the words themselves and these incredible grammatical distortions as living things - not just tools, to make his stories and sentences come to life. The words - even devoid of meaning - tell a story. Every comma, and parenthesis, tells a story. It also struck me how his writing reminded me, in places, of my own. Especially when it comes to using parenthesis'. I fucking love a good parenthesis. It is the one grammatical device I am emotionally attached to (it has a very special meaning for me). And the way it is used by Cummings is heavenly. So I recommend this book. The style is singular and perhaps you won't like it or understand anything at first, but I beg you to keep going - embrace it - keep your head above the water and swim like hell, you will reach land and it will be worth it. He had an extraordinary mind and a way with words I am inadvertently taken with. Here, have a few examples, and be convinced!: "pity this busy monster,manunkind, not" (manunkind is the most magnificent play on words) or "nobody,not even the rain,has such small hands" a favourite line of mine, I love the idea of the rain having small hands - perhaps then getting soaked is an embrace? These don't even begin to touch the variety or beauty and wit of the poems in this book - there's a very wide selection, both in themes and in style, so if you feel you want to get to know E.E. Cummings (a pursuit I can only recommend) this is a good place to start.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Rikke

    "I'd rather learn from one bird how to sing than teach ten thousand stars how not to dance" I have always been a little intimidated by E. E. Cummings' poetry. Just one look at one of his futuristic experiments with syntax and punctuation was more than enough to convince me that he was too difficult for me to read. But as it turned out it was silly of me to give up on him. I just needed the right guidance to his authorship which this edition happily provided me with. Though I can't claim to underst "I'd rather learn from one bird how to sing than teach ten thousand stars how not to dance" I have always been a little intimidated by E. E. Cummings' poetry. Just one look at one of his futuristic experiments with syntax and punctuation was more than enough to convince me that he was too difficult for me to read. But as it turned out it was silly of me to give up on him. I just needed the right guidance to his authorship which this edition happily provided me with. Though I can't claim to understand all of his poems, I have attained a greater and deeper understanding of his writing and themes. Of course some of the poems can only be defined as cryptic; almost equal to the riddles of the Sphinx, and therefore require a tremendous effort and several careful re-readings. But the thing is, when you finally do understand his use of words, parentheses and fragments, you will be completely overwhelmed by the shining, shimmering and bright magnificence of his writing. "time is a tree (this life one leaf) but love is the sky and i am for you just so long and long enough" I have been teary-eyed, breathless and left in a deep trance as I read through these pages. I have been frustrated and puzzled, but in the end I mostly felt grateful. Grateful that I made the effort and took the time to let the words speak for themselves. 'Cause they really do have a lot to say. Cummings had a peculiar way with words and even punctuation. There is not one letter or even a single comma that doesn't have a significant meaning. Even the use of 'i' instead of 'I' holds a great purpose. And also, I would like to add that E. E. Cummings probably wrote some of the most beautiful love poems of all-time. Soft and delicate with a sincere tone of wholeness. Just read 'somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond" and you'll see. I believe that poem is capable of melting any heart.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Rowena

    Another collection I wish I could give 5 stars to. Cummings was truly a wordsmith and I was in awe by several of his beautiful poems. However, at times I felt as though I was reading Finnegan’s Wake; some of the poems were just a bit too crazy and nonsensical. And as for favourites, here’s mine: “some ask praise of their fellows but i being otherwise made composure curves and yellows, angles or silences to a less erring end) myself is sculptor of your body’s idiom: the musician of your wrists; the poet wh Another collection I wish I could give 5 stars to. Cummings was truly a wordsmith and I was in awe by several of his beautiful poems. However, at times I felt as though I was reading Finnegan’s Wake; some of the poems were just a bit too crazy and nonsensical. And as for favourites, here’s mine: “some ask praise of their fellows but i being otherwise made composure curves and yellows, angles or silences to a less erring end) myself is sculptor of your body’s idiom: the musician of your wrists; the poet who is afraid only to mistranslate a rhythm in your hair, (your fingertips the way you move)”

  4. 4 out of 5

    Karin

    Such a disappointment, since there are moments of poetic brilliance scattered here and there and it is evident he was a brilliant man. If I owned this copy, I'd have highlighted them so that I could share some of those gems. This is the first time I have read a collection of his poems--hitherto I've just read one here or there and usually liked those. True, e e cummings was doing new things with poetry, but I have read better poets, or at least poets I liked better, who were also brilliant. Also Such a disappointment, since there are moments of poetic brilliance scattered here and there and it is evident he was a brilliant man. If I owned this copy, I'd have highlighted them so that I could share some of those gems. This is the first time I have read a collection of his poems--hitherto I've just read one here or there and usually liked those. True, e e cummings was doing new things with poetry, but I have read better poets, or at least poets I liked better, who were also brilliant. Also, to be honest, some of the sections were things I never like, such as a long section of satirical poetry and a section of erotica. But my chief problem was because in his exploration of new poetry techniques some got overused and often distracted from his point more than helped, even though as someone who spent a great deal of time in poetry for a number of years (way back well before the internet) I could see those points. I will also admit that when I ordered this book from the library I wrote ee cummings in a brain fart when I wanted to read Ogden Nash--two very different poets. I have never read a collection of Ogden Nash, either, and am not sure how that will go when I someday do that, but hopefully better.

  5. 4 out of 5

    IrritableSatirist

    "death,as men call him,ends what they call men --but beauty is more now than dying's when" I used to hate e. e. cummings but today my opinion has changed. He now seems to me one of the most powerful poets in the avant-garde tradition, a modernist who saw the world as the Transcendentalists did. What strikes me about cummings is that his style works to capture thought and feeling as it is experienced. The result is the human soul unfiltered, as if cummings is not so much writing down the final produ "death,as men call him,ends what they call men --but beauty is more now than dying's when" I used to hate e. e. cummings but today my opinion has changed. He now seems to me one of the most powerful poets in the avant-garde tradition, a modernist who saw the world as the Transcendentalists did. What strikes me about cummings is that his style works to capture thought and feeling as it is experienced. The result is the human soul unfiltered, as if cummings is not so much writing down the final product but a first draft, disorganized, raw, and potent. To quote him, cummings was a man of so many selves. Much of his poetry has a rare tenderness. Such poems as "i carry your heart with me(i carry it in" (a poem criminally absent in this edition), "somehwere i have never travelled,gladly beyond", "i thank you God for most this amazing day," and "i am a little church(no great cathedral)" are disarming in their sensitivity. And yet his poems can be stark, both in style ("l(a," "r-p-o-p-h-e-s-s-a-g-r," and "n(o)w") and in content ("the poem her belly marched through me as," "the dirty colours of her kiss have just," and "("fire stop thief help murder save the world""). In both situations, cummings' poetry is effective. In the past, I hated cummings for his experimentation. I saw his work as style over substance, a can of confused ramblings, with meaningless errors in punctuation and capitalization. Back then, I saw his avant-garde flourishes as a way to hide his soul. It is now that I realize that they actually set it free. That is all.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Peycho Kanev

    Well, he gave us the perfect line: cut, edgy, bold; like a shining diamond. He was more modern than the modern poets today. Yes, that's the truth. And, of course he was wonderful painter, artist. What else do we need? In times when almost everyone wrote like they wrote 200 years ago he showed us that there is another way to put the lines, another way to go at the subject; you can just cut it in half and to hell with it. One of the best avant-gard poets and he was guarding his style with his mass Well, he gave us the perfect line: cut, edgy, bold; like a shining diamond. He was more modern than the modern poets today. Yes, that's the truth. And, of course he was wonderful painter, artist. What else do we need? In times when almost everyone wrote like they wrote 200 years ago he showed us that there is another way to put the lines, another way to go at the subject; you can just cut it in half and to hell with it. One of the best avant-gard poets and he was guarding his style with his massive work, you know. So read, you all, Edward Estlin Cummings, just to know that there is still some beauty in the poetry today; that not all of it is academic and dry as bacon. That was all. Until the next book, until the next Word!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Gary

    Most of Cummings' work is beyond me, but that's not his fault, I believe. I enjoy reading poetry more for the beauty of the language, how a phrase is turned, more so than to understand. And, perhaps I'm a little too dense as well. This little collection provided many lines I could read aloud and hear the birds singing. Most of Cummings' work is beyond me, but that's not his fault, I believe. I enjoy reading poetry more for the beauty of the language, how a phrase is turned, more so than to understand. And, perhaps I'm a little too dense as well. This little collection provided many lines I could read aloud and hear the birds singing.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Anima

    Reading this collection was like watching an impressive fireworks show!The greatest moments of excitement did not come instantaneously at the first encounter with the poems –it took me some time to see beautiful images and feel vibrations of meanings penetrating my heart. The brief introductions included at the beginning of each 12 sections and E E Cummings’ sketches are portals towards the labyrinthic universe of each of the poems . So much delight to spend some time inside! To me, the most beau Reading this collection was like watching an impressive fireworks show!The greatest moments of excitement did not come instantaneously at the first encounter with the poems –it took me some time to see beautiful images and feel vibrations of meanings penetrating my heart. The brief introductions included at the beginning of each 12 sections and E E Cummings’ sketches are portals towards the labyrinthic universe of each of the poems . So much delight to spend some time inside! To me, the most beautiful poem from the entire collection is the one for his mother ( from whom he inherited his poetic gift) "if there are any heavens my mother will(all by herself)have one. It will not be a pansy heaven nor a fragile heaven of lilies-of-the-valley but it will be a heaven of blackred roses my father will be(deep like a rose tall like a rose) standing near my (swaying over her silent) with eyes which are really petals and see nothing with the face of a poet really which is a flower and not a face with hands which whisper This is my beloved my (suddenly in sunlight he will bow, & the whole garden will bow) I also liked these ones: “the Cambridge ladies who live in furnished souls are unbeautiful and have comfortable minds ……………………….. ...the Cambridge ladies do not care,above Cambridge if sometimes in its box of sky lavender and cornerless, the moon rattles like a fragment of angry candy” Now i lay(with everywhere around) “………… now i lay me down(in a most steep more than music)feeling that sunlight is (life and day are)only loaned:whereas night is given(night and death and the rain are given;and given is how beautifully snow) now i lay me down to dream of(nothing i or any somebody or you can begin to begin to imagine) something which nobody may keep. now i lay me down to dream of Spring” since feeling is first “since feeling is first who pays any attention to the syntax of things will never wholly kiss you; wholly to be a fool while Spring is in the world my blood approves, and kisses are a better fate than wisdom lady i swear by all flowers. Don’t cry – the best gesture of my brain is less than your eyelids’ flutter which says we are for each other; then laugh, leaning back in my arms for life’s not a paragraph And death i think is no parenthesis” i like my body when it is with your “……… … And eyes big love-crumbs, and possibly i like the thrill of under me you so quite new”

  9. 5 out of 5

    Hester

    I've loved the poem 'carry your heart' for years and known I love Cummings because of that. I've been on a bit of a poetry binge so decided to get this book and see if I liked more of his work. I really do enjoy it. The way he used language and syntax, shaping it to his own meaning and expression is beautiful. But it's not easy. There are little intros to the sections which help explain a lot about some of the poems thank god. I like to understand. To work out the layers and meanings and these re I've loved the poem 'carry your heart' for years and known I love Cummings because of that. I've been on a bit of a poetry binge so decided to get this book and see if I liked more of his work. I really do enjoy it. The way he used language and syntax, shaping it to his own meaning and expression is beautiful. But it's not easy. There are little intros to the sections which help explain a lot about some of the poems thank god. I like to understand. To work out the layers and meanings and these really helped. I think you could spend hours on these and find more and more, which I haven't.. yet. Hopefully I will appreciate the poems even further then. So many little lines, turns of phrase or just words leap out at you and grab on. I find I don't always fully grasp the whole poem but there are some lines that I keep going back to. Things like: the power of your intense fragility nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands reaped their sowing and went their came, sun moon stars rain I'd rather learn from one bird how to sing than teach ten thousand stars how not to dance. Now I'm writing this I want to go read it again. It it more confusing than not, but when you work it out the reward is wonderous. You feel like you deserve to understand the beauty and the humour he's portraying after suffering over a passage or a turn of phrase for a while. It's beautiful and this copy is a lovely selection

  10. 5 out of 5

    Malak Alrashed

    I got to know E.E. Cummings through Youtube, YES, he was among certain poets Tom Hiddleston read for. He read May I Feel Said He; a really dirty poem. So yep, I got my hands on Cummings as soon as I could, and I was happy that his other poems were as dirty and erotic as my first impression of him. E.E Cummings is hard to resist, and this collection gives a great insight into his unique poetry as he doesn't follow any traditional rule or pattern, he makes his own words and rules. Thematically spe I got to know E.E. Cummings through Youtube, YES, he was among certain poets Tom Hiddleston read for. He read May I Feel Said He; a really dirty poem. So yep, I got my hands on Cummings as soon as I could, and I was happy that his other poems were as dirty and erotic as my first impression of him. E.E Cummings is hard to resist, and this collection gives a great insight into his unique poetry as he doesn't follow any traditional rule or pattern, he makes his own words and rules. Thematically speaking, Cummings focuses on love, mostly and life and he's good at both. Although, sometimes the poems are hard to interpret and you can get lost trying to follow his thoughts, but he manages to get you back to track after a hell of a ride. "So far as I am concerned," Cummings once declared, "poetry and every other art was and is and forever will be strictly and distinctly a question of individuality….Nobody else can be alive for you; nor can you be alive for anybody else." The rebellious and distinct sounds of E.E Cummings are a great reminder of how important individuality is, he is able to send tremendous feelings in such brief words. He is always mentioned in films -Hanna and Her Sisters- and he has made an influence in poetry. Read him.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Paul

    I cannot read 'anyone lived in a pretty how town' aloud without crying. I think it's one of the most perfect poems ever written. Everything he wrote in the height of his career in the 30's and 40's is pretty much terrific. It's a shame that he lost it later on and grew cynical and complacent, but I guess he earned it. These are some of my favorite poems to teach, if for nothing other than confounding the students with the diction. I cannot read 'anyone lived in a pretty how town' aloud without crying. I think it's one of the most perfect poems ever written. Everything he wrote in the height of his career in the 30's and 40's is pretty much terrific. It's a shame that he lost it later on and grew cynical and complacent, but I guess he earned it. These are some of my favorite poems to teach, if for nothing other than confounding the students with the diction.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Ana

    Some poems did not catch my interest despite their linguistic acrobatics, but for the most part, this was an interesting collection with many memorable poems.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ian

    The Greatest American Poet of the 20th Century. That's all. The Greatest American Poet of the 20th Century. That's all.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Sophie

    Extraordinary. I never thought I’d like this sort of free form poetry but it is quite something to experience this collection of E E Cumming’s work! Especially the short introductions at the start of each chapter were helpful to better understand exactly what he was expressing.

  15. 5 out of 5

    oliver

    good stuff, even when i feel like i’ve lost my grasp of the english language. in terms of compilation, well-organized, and let me tell you, he’s got some DEVASTATING satire

  16. 4 out of 5

    Nikki

    your slightest look will easily unclose me though i have closed myself as fingers, you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens (touching skilfully, mysteriously)her first rose or if your wish be to close me,i and my life will shut very beautifully,suddenly, as when the heart of this flower imagines the snow carefully everywhere descending; (i do not know what it is about you that closes and opens;only something in me understands the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses) Hays. Nakakakilig.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kyo

    I just love E.E. Cummings, one of my favourite poets and this is collection is really good!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Puteri Yasmin Suraya

    OK, I know it's kind of cheating when I put a poetry collection on my shelf, thereby adding it to my reading challenge, but on a normal basis I would read poetry books by flipping randomly to a page, read one or two poems, and then set it back down, perhaps picking it back up weeks later. That's why I never add poetry to my GR shelf. But E.E. Cummings' collection is the only poetry book I've actually read cover to cover, marking each poem that resonated deeply within me (the Contents page is now OK, I know it's kind of cheating when I put a poetry collection on my shelf, thereby adding it to my reading challenge, but on a normal basis I would read poetry books by flipping randomly to a page, read one or two poems, and then set it back down, perhaps picking it back up weeks later. That's why I never add poetry to my GR shelf. But E.E. Cummings' collection is the only poetry book I've actually read cover to cover, marking each poem that resonated deeply within me (the Contents page is now near full with highlights). I read them all within a single day, and then spent the next few days rereading them and falling more deeply in love. His poems aren't all easily accessible nor simple; a lot of them require further squinting and that pen-in-between-your-teeth struggle when interpreting them, but I found that not so much frustrating as greatly engaging. The amount of attention and detail in his craft is amazing. I'm not quite sure how to describe his avant-garde style, but it is so unique and uncopiable and just very Cummings, and it manages to evoke so much in so little. If I had to choose a favourite poetry book to carry with me to my grave, it would be this one; I'm sorry Glück, Neruda, Sexton, Eliot… E.E. Cummings just gets me like no one else does.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Jeff

    Part of a 2020 Pandemic Project: using poets' repetitions to make something i'm now calling repoesy. (now) up attractive. Feet begin As if (yours) bells (mine) wind Clover bells (up) riding (Bells) riding mountain utters Dreams (so that) as simple (Boom Down) begin (to fathers) Are dancing (down) again and You (look) (said) (kiss has been) (found) Holy alone. The trees stand +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ if you want to make your own... +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ again and| {or |and again| } are dan Part of a 2020 Pandemic Project: using poets' repetitions to make something i'm now calling repoesy. (now) up attractive. Feet begin As if (yours) bells (mine) wind Clover bells (up) riding (Bells) riding mountain utters Dreams (so that) as simple (Boom Down) begin (to fathers) Are dancing (down) again and You (look) (said) (kiss has been) (found) Holy alone. The trees stand +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ if you want to make your own... +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ again and| {or |and again| } are dancing| as if| as simple| attractive| begin to| begin| bells| bells| bells| boom| clover| down| down| dreams| fathers| feet| has been found| holy alone| kiss| look| mine| mountain| now| riding| riding| said| so| that| the trees stand| up| up| utters| wind| you| yours|

  20. 4 out of 5

    Leela Srinivasan

    He's so weird. I love him. This is why I read poetry-- I don't feel like I'm supposed to get all of it. I don't want to constantly read things that I think I could have written. Sometimes it's nice, when a writer reaches into your soul and pulls it out on paper, but e.e. cummings shows me a whole new picture, one I have never seen before, and it's muddled and confusing but it fills me with awe. I didn't get a lot of this book. I wasn't meant to. But it stretches and redefines the limits of what He's so weird. I love him. This is why I read poetry-- I don't feel like I'm supposed to get all of it. I don't want to constantly read things that I think I could have written. Sometimes it's nice, when a writer reaches into your soul and pulls it out on paper, but e.e. cummings shows me a whole new picture, one I have never seen before, and it's muddled and confusing but it fills me with awe. I didn't get a lot of this book. I wasn't meant to. But it stretches and redefines the limits of what poetry is, to me, and the parts I get I carry in my heart (haha! get it!). a favorite excerpt: and in a mystery to be, (when time from time will set us free) forgetting me,remember me

  21. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    *3.5 stars* First off, just let me say that even though I "only" gave this 3.5 stars, I really did enjoy it, and I consider Cummings one of my favorite poets. However, I have to rate this as a cumulative piece of work, and there were so many poems (around 150 I believe) that overall it was such a mixed bag. Some I absolutely loved, some I just liked, and some I wasn't a fan of. I think it's a great collection of his poetry if you like him, I really appreciated the little essays before each sectio *3.5 stars* First off, just let me say that even though I "only" gave this 3.5 stars, I really did enjoy it, and I consider Cummings one of my favorite poets. However, I have to rate this as a cumulative piece of work, and there were so many poems (around 150 I believe) that overall it was such a mixed bag. Some I absolutely loved, some I just liked, and some I wasn't a fan of. I think it's a great collection of his poetry if you like him, I really appreciated the little essays before each section, and there are definitely some standouts within the book. Overall I think this was a well-rounded collection of his work that I would definitely recommend if you enjoy Cummings!

  22. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    This was not my cup of tea. I don't love poetry generally and I found most of this to be nonsensical. If you're the type of person who enjoys sitting and reading poems, spending time interpreting them and appreciating variances in form and verse etc., you might enjoy this. For me, it was more of a headache than anything else. Some verses and poems were entertaining, and I can see that E.E. Cummings was thought-provoking, experimental, and thoughtful, but it's just not for me. This was not my cup of tea. I don't love poetry generally and I found most of this to be nonsensical. If you're the type of person who enjoys sitting and reading poems, spending time interpreting them and appreciating variances in form and verse etc., you might enjoy this. For me, it was more of a headache than anything else. Some verses and poems were entertaining, and I can see that E.E. Cummings was thought-provoking, experimental, and thoughtful, but it's just not for me.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Danielle Long

    I don't really care for poetry and decided to give it another try with Cummings. Alas, I love his poems but I'm still on the fence with poetry in general. Thanks to a college professor who ruined my love for it a few years ago. Maybe I will come around one day. I don't really care for poetry and decided to give it another try with Cummings. Alas, I love his poems but I'm still on the fence with poetry in general. Thanks to a college professor who ruined my love for it a few years ago. Maybe I will come around one day.

  24. 4 out of 5

    hayden

    this edition is wonderfully organized. it's split into sections, and each contains an introduction of biographical context. (also, i didn't read this in one day: i've been slowly reading it over time, but forgot to mark when i started it. such is life.) this edition is wonderfully organized. it's split into sections, and each contains an introduction of biographical context. (also, i didn't read this in one day: i've been slowly reading it over time, but forgot to mark when i started it. such is life.)

  25. 5 out of 5

    Mark

    O e.e. cummings ,i love, the words and mashed and somethings rules aren't real it would do many of us good to ,some, remember O e.e. cummings ,i love, the words and mashed and somethings rules aren't real it would do many of us good to ,some, remember

  26. 4 out of 5

    Kat

    real good primer on ee cummings, learnt a lot and really loved it also im in such a reading funk at the moment, does anyone have any recs?

  27. 5 out of 5

    Angela Lim

    who are you,little i (five or six years old) peering from some high window;at the gold of november sunset (and feeling: that if day has to become night this is a beautiful way) E. E. Cummings is perhaps the first poet that piqued my interest. Back in high school, we had to write a biographical and literary report on any American poet of our choosing. We also had the freedom to select which poems we would analyze, mentioning themes and literary devices that the poet employed. The final part of the projec who are you,little i (five or six years old) peering from some high window;at the gold of november sunset (and feeling: that if day has to become night this is a beautiful way) E. E. Cummings is perhaps the first poet that piqued my interest. Back in high school, we had to write a biographical and literary report on any American poet of our choosing. We also had the freedom to select which poems we would analyze, mentioning themes and literary devices that the poet employed. The final part of the project was to write a poem in the same style as the poet we had analyzed. At the time, Cummings’s poems were the only poems that seemed fun to me, and his playful approach to language was obvious enough that I thought I could try to mimic it in my own writing. Now that my understanding of poetry has somewhat grown, I find myself nostalgic for Cummings’s poems. His poems were some of the first that expanded how I saw language and how poetry is different than other forms of literature and why that’s important. It’s also a little funny to me that his poems were the ones that stuck with me, considering I’m not super into experimental poetry, and Cummings’s poems that mixed cubism with typewriter play definitely fall into the category of experimentation. My poetic voice has definitely diverged from my early attempts that drew upon Cummings’s writing. Nevertheless, Cummings’s approach to poetry is one that I admire, and one that was echoed by my undergraduate poetry advisor: poetry is play. To write a poem is to push the boundaries of language, to see the world in a cross-eyed way, to braid one’s own perspective with the objective world. These are things I see throughout Cummings’s poems, and that I will always carry with me. This collection of poems made me aware of the diversity of Cummings’s poems. From idyllic nursery-rhyme-esque poems, to crass love poems and political satires, I really appreciated being able to take a closer look at how his voice evolved. Richard S. Kennedy’s introduction to each set of poems provided wonderful insight to the breadth of the poet’s work.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    I love love love love it. Cummings was a creative genius. Read his poems. * in time of all sweet things beyond whatever mind may comprehend remember seek (forgetting find) and in a mystery to be (when time from time shall set us free) forgetting me,remember me * if a world ends more tha all worlds begin to(see?) begin * -far away(as far as alive)lies april;and i breathe-move-and-seem some perpetually roaming whylessness- * wherelings, whenlings (daughers of if but offspring of hopefear sos of unless and child I love love love love it. Cummings was a creative genius. Read his poems. * in time of all sweet things beyond whatever mind may comprehend remember seek (forgetting find) and in a mystery to be (when time from time shall set us free) forgetting me,remember me * if a world ends more tha all worlds begin to(see?) begin * -far away(as far as alive)lies april;and i breathe-move-and-seem some perpetually roaming whylessness- * wherelings, whenlings (daughers of if but offspring of hopefear sos of unless and children of almost)

  29. 5 out of 5

    Andrea

    “In time of daffodils (who know the goal of living is to grow) forgetting why, remember how in time of lilacs who proclaim the aim of waking is to dream, remember so (forgetting seem) in time of roses (who amaze our now and here with paradise) forgetting if, remember yes in time of all sweet things beyond whatever mind may comprehend remember seek (forgetting find) and in a mystery to be (when time from time shall set us free) forgetting me, remember me”

  30. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    I really didn't think I would love his poetry as much as I did. I haven't met a poet in a long time that I wanted to memorize several pieces of their work. He has an amazing ability to craft words and phrases and feelings. This is going on my favorites shelf at home. As a point of note - there are some sections of poetry that focus on the erotic and I passed over that. But the other sections on non-erotic love, the seasons, religion, and war were phenomenal. I really didn't think I would love his poetry as much as I did. I haven't met a poet in a long time that I wanted to memorize several pieces of their work. He has an amazing ability to craft words and phrases and feelings. This is going on my favorites shelf at home. As a point of note - there are some sections of poetry that focus on the erotic and I passed over that. But the other sections on non-erotic love, the seasons, religion, and war were phenomenal.

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