Poetry Unbound: 50 Poems To Open Your World

Norton. Dec. 2022. 384p. ISBN 9781324035473. $27.95. POETRY
This fascinating collection began life as a podcast on Krista Tippett’s On Being public-radio program; hence its intimate feeling, as if you were listening to a friend recall an interesting experience or a memory shared as a gift. With only 50 poems in 384 pages, the text focuses on Ó Tuama’s personal reflections intermingled with personal memories or meditations evoked by something in the poem. With grace and insight, he demonstrates how a poem can become a part of your life, something to feed your soul, bind your wounds, and add as one more tool for your life-support utility belt. The poets are mainly contemporary, including Ada Limón, Marie Howe, and Christian Wiman, but they range back to the likes of James Wright and Rainier Rilke. Some will be familiar, but a great number of these poets will be new to most readers. Ó Tuama does the important work of introducing them to a broader audience as he gives us an opening into their wonderful words.
VERDICT With his intimate tone, Ó Tuama takes poetry out of the classroom and puts it back into the hands of the reader. He thereby makes the world a better place. Recommended for poetry collections everywhere.
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