Division of Spoils is a selection of the poetry J. D. McClatchy has published over the past two decades, and introduces British readers to the work of one of America's most distinguished poets.
Time Magazine hailed a recent collection of his as
a reputation-making wonder that isn't just the year's best book of poems, but may also turn out to be the year's best book. Poised, architectural, and built to last in the effortlessly disciplined tradition of W. H. Auden and Robert Lowell, the poems also have a sharp confessional kick worthy of Anne Sexton at her most bruising.
Critics have consistently praised the brilliant surfaces and haunting depths of his work. McClatchy's poems have a formal ingenuity, sumptuous in their weave of impassioned thought and clear-sighted feeling. At the same time, they can be unnerving in the range of their concerns and challenges — as urgent as headlines, as mysterious as dreams. Here are lyrics and fables, odes and epistles that take up material as different as mammograms and motels, visiting a saint or Proust in a brothel. Harold Bloom has predicted that no more eloquent poet will emerge in his American generation.
McClatchy's rare eloquence, charged with passion and raised to a remarkable power, is dazzlingly on display in Division of Spoils. Here is a master to discover. Here are poems to enthral.
ISBN 1 900072 65 3
Published January 2002