By (Greek deity) Persephone; Glück, Louise

Averno is a small crater lake in southern Italy, appeared via the traditional Romans because the front to the underworld. That position offers its identify to Louise Glück's 10th assortment: in a panorama grew to become irretrievably to iciness, it's a gate or passageway that invitations site visitors among worlds whereas while resisting their reconciliation. Averno is a longer lamentation, its lengthy, stressed poems no much less spellbinding for being with no traditional resoltution or comfort, no much less ravishing for being savage, grief-stricken. What Averno offers isn't a map to some degree of arrival or departure, yet a diagram of the place we're, the harrowing, enduring present.

Averno is a 2006 nationwide ebook Award Finalist for Poetry.

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Sample text

Then: The Garden. In the end, he decides to name it Persephone’s Girlhood. A soft light rising above the level meadow, behind the bed. He takes her in his arms. He wants to say I love you, nothing can hurt you but he thinks this is a lie, so he says in the end you’re dead, nothing can hurt you which seems to him a more promising beginning, more true. AVERNO 1. You die when your spirit dies. Otherwise, you live. You may not do a good job of it, but you go on— something you have no choice about. When I tell this to my children they pay no attention.

I remember the word for chair. I want to say—I’m just not interested anymore. I wake up thinking you have to prepare. Soon the spirit will give up— all the chairs in the world won’t help you. I know what they say when I’m out of the room. Should I be seeing someone, should I be taking one of the new drugs for depression. I can hear them, in whispers, planning how to divide the cost. And I want to scream out you’re all of you living in a dream. Bad enough, they think, to watch me falling apart. Bad enough without this lecturing they get these days as though I had any right to this new information.

8. Well, we are here to do something about that. ) 9. I had a dream: we are at war. My mother leaves her crossbow in the high grass. ) My childhood, closed to me forever, turned gold like an autumn garden, mulched with a thick layer of salt marsh hay. 10. A golden bow: a useful gift in wartime. How heavy it was—no child could pick it up. Except me: I could pick it up. 11. Then I was wounded. The bow was now a harp, its string cutting deep into my palm. In the dream it both makes the wound and seals the wound.

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