Publication Date: November 14, 2023
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A bestselling collection of more than 125 small poems, each a thought or observation compressed to its emotional essence, by the former United States Poet Laureate—with many new poems for the paperback.
"The poetry of Billy Collins has a kindness that glitters with hard truth, and in Musical Tables he gives us a book of short, witty, often poignant snapshots of our sad and funny world.” —Paul Simon
"Whenever I open a book of poems, I tend to flip through looking for the small ones. Just as I might have trust in an abstract expressionist painter if I knew he or she could draw a credible chicken, I trust poets who can go short." --Billy Collins
You can spot a Billy Collins poem at once—the amiable voice, the light touch, the sudden turn at the end. "He puts the 'fun' back in profundity," says Alice Fulton. In his own words, his poems tend to "start in Kansas and end in Oz."
Now Collins has found a new form for his unique poetic style: the small poem. Here Collins writes about his trademark themes of nature, animals, poetry, mortality, absurdity, and love—all in a handful of lines. Inspired by the small poetry of writers as diverse as William Carlos Williams, W.S. Merwin, Kay Ryan, and Charles Simic, and written with Collins's recognizable wit and wisdom, the more than 125 poems of Musical Tables show one of our greatest poets channeling his unique voice into a new phase of his exceptional career.
Only my hand
but it’s a start.
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