THE FIFTH DAY by Mary Q.--Ed. Steele


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Steele's anthology of poems is limited in subject to ""the things that were present on the fifth day of creation""--and her selection of poets seems to have been guided by a similar though unstated cutoff point. There is a typical e. e. cummings (""Post Impressions"") and three familiar but refreshing Roethkes, but overall this is a traditional collection, weighted toward minor and conventional selections from Coleridge, Tennyson, de la Mare, Shelley, etc. Otherwise the 56 selections, mostly short lyrics, range in accessibility from Ishmael Reed's throwaway (""A crocidile dont hunt/ Him's victims/ They hunts him/ All he do is/ Open he jaws"" to Hopkins' demanding ""Inversnaid,"" and in mood from celebrations of larks or waterfowl to Conrad Aiken's vision of desolation in ""Priapus and the Pool."" Some bright spots, but unexciting as a whole.

Pub Date: March 13th, 1978
Publisher: Greenwillow