CHINA TRACE by Charles Wright


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A heavy dose of concise and elegantly articulated imagery--which has rendered Charles Wright's work somewhat overwrought in three previous books--becomes integrated here with a tempered and more accessible vision. Although the tone is distant and Oriental, the issues are personal, out front, and deeply moving. Time in the present becomes a point of origin for reflection, whether looking back to a childhood finally comprehended ("". . . turning transparent/ you follow me like a dog/ I see through at last. . ."") or to the future and the accepted inevitability of death (""I take you as I take the moon rising/ Darkness, black moth the light burns up in""). This is an extremely sophisticated work, by a man coming to terms with the basic issues of his life, and by a poet who has learned to communicate in a style he previously used as mere device. Only one glaring fault persists: the overall effect is too controlled and even, caused by a reluctance to take the less calculated risks.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1977
Publisher: Wesleyan Univ. Press