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Windcatcher: New & Selected Poems 1964-2006 (Anglais) Relié – 5 novembre 2007

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"The greatest Afrikaner poet of his generation."--The New Yorker

"[Breytenbach] write[s] with a wild heart and an unrelenting eye, and is fueled by the sort of rage that produces great literature." --The Washington Post Book World

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2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Sampling of his 40 years' work 5 décembre 2007
Par Armchair Interviews - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
Reviewed by Beth Cummings

Subtitled: New and Selected Poems 1964-2006

Breyten Breytenbach was born and raised in South Africa. He spent some of his college years in France where he married a French-Vietnamese woman. Upon returning to South Africa, during the apartheid years, he was persecuted for marrying outside of his race and subsequently imprisoned for seven years for anti-apartheid activities.

The poetry in this book covers his years in France, the years in prison and poetry written in exile in New York, Vancouver, Amsterdam and Dar es Salaam. He is also an artist and has exhibited paintings in various locations.

Breytenbach is extremely imaginative and writes his verse with descriptions that demonstrate that he sees with the eyes of an artist. He paints word pictures that are haunting beautiful and sometimes horrifically real.

A particularly vivid view of the ocean is found in the beginning of "departure."

"In the basin between mainland and island lies the sea
within her twilight womb unknown pinnacles and forests and valleys
and blackfish and cities and urns of wine and skeletons plucked bare
over which our boat streaks."

From prison in " poem on toilet paper" he writes:

"nights everything is possible
this red labyrinth that I inhabit like a rat
its echoing passages and frowns of steel barriers fade away
only floodlights and solitary warders
ring the darkness in rising towers
the jail becomes a monetary."

The poem continues to give details of nights in a prison cell.

Later, in "the conquerors" he expresses some of his anger with apartheid:

"because we refused to see them as people
all that was inside us wasted away
and we find no more tears to bemoan our dying
because we wanted nothing but hatred and fear
we ignored their uprising clamoring for humane laws
and hoarsely tried to find ways out but all too late
the flower's in the fire."

Breytenbach is not an easy poet to read. He touches hard subjects without fear. There is also a complication in syntax occasionally due to his writing in a other than his first language. These poems are not translations however.

This book gives an excellent sampling of forty years work.

Armchair Interviews says: This is worthy of study by readers of poetry.
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
"the older you become the more silent you are" 8 novembre 2007
Par Luan Gaines - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
A collection of Breytenbach's poetry from 1964 through 2006, this volume features a number of unfinished poems, from a South African prison, from 60s Paris and New York exile in the 90s, spanning the geography of Africa (Dar es Salaam), Amsterdam and Vancouver. A harbinger of the winds of change, the poet speaks to universal conscience and one man's journey through a troubled world as expressed in his work. Born in South Africa in 1939, Breytenbach left his country of origin only to be imprisoned when he returned.

In sections, from "Iron Cow Blues, Poems in Exile (1964-1975"), "The Undanced Dance, Poems from Prison (1975-1982)" and "The Lines Have Fallen unto Me in Beautiful Places, Poems from Outside (1983-2006)", the progressive journey of the creative mind emerges, a poet sorting images through time and place, sprinkling the world he passes through with memory:

"give me a heart
small fountain of blood
to spout blossoms of bliss
for blood is never for naught"

and more...

"I need to die before I'm dead
when my heart is still fertile and red
before I eat the darkened soil of doubt"
("rebel song"- Iron Cow Blues, Poems in Exile, 1964-1975)

Indeed, exile breeds waves of thought, sorting through places, people, governments, soldiers with drawn bayonets who turn blind eyes on those they face:

"in a crowd you're always a fugitive,
don't smoke, don't drink:
is your life not a weapon?
you go down poisoned with despair
shot like a dog in a dead-end street"
("exile, representative, for FM and MK"- Iron Cow Blues, Poems in Exile, 1964-1975)

The cycle of life and death persists, an awareness of the harsh excesses of captivity, trapped inside walls while the world continues, oblivious:

"we all walk that road
of life on its way to death-
murderers, burglars, drug addicts and firebugs
thugs, embezzlers, rapists
and fellow terrorists
you like me tattooed in lineament and skin
single in our destiny"
("for Francois Villon"- The Undanced Dance, Poems from Prison, 1975-1982)

Coalesced in freedom, or at least no longer confined, words flow from the deepest chambers of the heart, a life survived yielding valuable lessons, a scorched landscape of human endeavors, flaws and soul-searing insights:

"At night dreams enter the houses where I sleep.
Sometimes I converse with flies about suns
and the sins of being human, for I engrave
self-portrait journeys in scattered verses
and align my life to the lines of landscapes."
("self-portrait"- The Lines Have Fallen unto Me in Beautiful Places, Poems from Outside, 1983-2006)

A thrilling collection that spans years and alternative landscapes, the voice is unmistakable, significant and profoundly provocative. Luan Gaines/ 2007.
0 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Bad Poetry. 26 décembre 2013
Par Larry Roetzel - Publié sur Amazon.com
Achat vérifié
Bad poetry. Don't waste your money, or your time.
Stick to his essays. He writes wonderful essays.
He uses language well. But he is not a poet.
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