The Life of Images
“Decades after immigrating to the States in 1954, [Simic] retains an outsider’s perspective: inquisitive, incredulous, amazed by the apparently ordinary-all excellent qualities for an essayist. There’s ample warmth and charm here.” -New York Times Book Review In addition to being one of America’s most famous and commended poets, Charles Simic is a prolific and talented essayist. The Life of Images brings together his best prose written over twenty-five years. A blend of the thoughtful, comic, and tragic, the essays in The Life of Images explore subjects ranging from poetry to philosophy, photography, politics, and art, to Simic’s childhood in a war-torn country. Culled from five collections, these works demonstrate the qualities that make Simic’s poetry so original yet accessible. Whether he is pondering the relationship between history and the individual, or recalling growing up in Belgrade and New York City, Simic shares his distinctive take on the world and offers an intimate look into the life and mind of an immigrant.
"Intriguing... Virtually all the essays include sentences that could well find a home in Bartlett's... Lucid, lyrical, educative and engaging virtually all areas of the brain." -- Kirkus Reviews (starred review) "Simic's The Life of Images: Selected Prose, also published this month, elucidates the poems, providing background into his experience (including his childhood in war-torn Yugoslavia) and the influences that have shaped his thinking." -- Washington Post "'When our souls are happy,' Charles Simic has written, 'they talk about food.' When my soul is happy, often enough, I want to talk about Mr. Simic...The Life of Images reminds us that Mr. Simic can be...intense (and as intensely charming) in his nonfiction. -- New York Times Book Review "The Life of Images is a free-wheeling and stimulating volume...Wry and smart...Simic is piquantly engaging, shrewdly hilarious, and superbly discerning and moving in his elucidation of poetry's invaluable unexpectedness, subversiveness, and inexhaustibility." -- Booklist (starred review) "In artful, lucid, and sometimes humorous essays, he offers commanding insights on such diverse topics as poetry's relationship to philosophy, the ravages of war, and the unpredictable beauties of film and music...His wit shines and sparkles on every page." -- Publishers Weekly "Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Simic brings a nuanced, cosmopolitan perspective to his essays, which explore art, intellect, his childhood memories, and the immigrant experience in America." -- O, the Oprah Magazine "The Lunatic, his newest poetry collection, is his thirty-sixth. Simultaneously, Ecco, his publisher, has brought out The Life of Images: Selected Prose ,... the cream of his six previous prose collections... one of our finest poets,... a singularly engaging, eminently sane American essayist." -- New York Review of Books "Decades after immigrating to the States in 1954, he retains an outsider's perspective: inquisitive, incredulous, amazed by the apparently ordinary-all excellent qualities for an essayist. There's ample warmth and charm here." -- New York Times Book Review
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