University of Michigan Press, 2013
“The best book I know about making, writing, shaping & sharing poetry.”—Peter Meinke
The product of a lifetime of writing, reading, editing, teaching, and loving poetry, this unique, accessible, and delightful book is jam-packed with everything you need to know to excel at the craft of the poet, whether you are an accomplished poet or a student, part of a group of writers or on your own. A Poet’s Craft combines the best of a forms handbook, a comprehensive poetry anthology, and a complete poetry-writing textbook, all in a style readable and lively enough for readers from advanced high-school to adult to enjoy. APC includes sections on journaling and inspiration, revision, publishing, and even how to assemble a collection, along with poetry-writing exercises and discussion of classic and contemporary poems. It is logically organized to provide a complete overview of the elements of poetry writing, from diction to trope to free verse. Written by a top expert in the field of versification, A Poet’s Craft also provides a complete introduction to meter and to writing formal poetry, covering important new ground not covered by other form guides.
"Finch’s book goes further than any poetry-writing guide now available to give readers a thorough and exciting introduction to every aspect of the art of poetry."— University of Michigan Press
READERS, TEACHERS, POETS, AND STUDENTS ON A POET’S CRAFT:
"A Poet’s Craft is a wonderful and necessary book."
—Honoree Fannon Jeffers, Poet and Professor, Graduate Creative Writing Faculty, University of Oklahoma
"Personal, erudite, and comprehensive, this volume is really many books in one, the product of many years’ work and a lifetime of serious engagement with poetry. Sharing…writing exercises, study questions, discussions of poems for literary insight and excellence–the book presents detailed analyses of everything from metaphor to meter, from rhyme to revision."
— B. Wallenstein, CUNY City College, Review in Choice
"No question. Just a 6 am thank you from California. I'm reading A Poet's Craft. Instructing, absorbing, entertaining, fascinating. And now in the chapter on iambic meter--may I add "soothing and enlightening."I'm a late-comer to prosody and poetry studies, and relatively new to hearing the songs in iambic pentameter. I love reading about such rhythms and fluxes, but you are one if those few writers who can share their own joys while teaching. Again, thank you for early morning comforts."
—Temperance Davis, Reader
"A Poet’s Craft is a delightful read, a very useful textbook, and a treasure box of poems and poets, both familiar and un-. I carry it around with me everywhere so I can take little nibbles out of it every chance I get."
—Sarah Shmitt, English Teacher, Portland High School, Maine
"The best book I know about making, writing, shaping & sharing poetry."
—Peter Meinke, poet, MFA faculty, University of Tampa
"This was the first poetry textbook that clicked with everyone in my class of nontraditional students. Whether “left-brained” retired nurses or “right-brained” visual artists, every one of them can understand it. Furthermore, they rave about how much they are learning from the text, while enjoying Finch’s tone."
—Ivy Page, poet
"A Poet’s Craft is an MFA program for the autodidact. . . it sounds the way Annie speaks, and it teaches poetry students to learn by reading closely…without exhortations, just gently slipping into examples and asking the right questions."
—Ann Michaels, Canadian Poet and Novelist
"Nothing less than an MFA program in 600 pages."
-G.M. Palmer, The Critical Flame
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