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1. Without: Poems
2. Essays After Eighty
Deliciously readable . . . Donald Hall, if abandoned by the muse of poetry, has wrought his prose to a keen autumnal edge. Wall Street Journal
His entire life, Donald Hall dedicated himself to the written word, putting together a storied career as a poet, essayist, and memoirist. Here, in the unknown, unanticipated galaxy of very old age, his essays startle, move, and delight. InEssays After Eighty,Hall ruminates on his past: thirty was terrifying, forty I never noticed because I was drunk, fifty was best with a total change of life, sixty extended the bliss of fifty . . . He also addresses his present: When I turned eighty and rubbed testosterone on my chest, my beard roared like a lion and gained four inches. Most memorably, Hall writes about his enduring love affair with his ancestral Eagle Pond Farm and with the writing life that sustains him every day: Yesterday my first nap was at 9:30 a.m., but when I awoke I wrote again.
Alluring, inspirational hominess . . .Essays After Eightyis a treasure . . . balancing frankness about losses with humor and gratitude. Washington Post
A fine book of remembering all sorts of things past,Essays After Eightyis to be treasured. Boston Globe
3. A Carnival of Losses: Notes Nearing Ninety
From the former poet laureate of the United States,essays from the vantage point of very old age
Donald Hall lived a remarkable life of letters, one capped most recently by the New YorkTimes bestsellerEssays After Eighty, a treasure of a book in which he balance[s] frankness about losses with humor and gratitude (Washington Post). Before his passing in 2018, nearing ninety, Hall delivered this new collection of self-knowing, fierce, and funny essays on aging, the pleasures of solitude,and the sometimes astonishing freedoms arising from both. He interspersesmemories of exuberant daysasin Paris, 1951,with a French girl memorably inclined to say, I couldnt care lesswithwriting, visceral and hilarious, on what hehas calledthe unknown, unanticipated galaxy of extreme old age.
Why should a nonagenarian hold anything back? Hall answers his own question byrevealing several vivid instances ofthe worst thing I ever did," and throughequally uncensored tales of literary friendships spanning decades, with James Wright, Richard Wilbur, Seamus Heaney,and other luminaries.
Cementing his place alongside Roger Angell and Joan Didion as a generous and profound chronicler of loss, Hallreturns to the deathof his beloved wife, Jane Kenyon, in an essay as original and searing as anything he's written in hisextraordinary literary lifetime.
4. The Painted Bed: Poems
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5. The Selected Poems of Donald Hall
FeatureHOUGHTON MIFFLIN HARCOURT
DescriptionFormer poet laureateDonald Hall selects the essential work from a moving and brilliant life in poetry.
Long-Listed for the 2016 National Book Award
Donald Hall was an American master, one of the nations most beloved and accomplished poets. Here, in his eighties, having taken stock of the body of his workrigorous, gorgeous verse that is the result of seventy years of ambition and pleasurehe strips it down.
The Selected Poems of Donald Hall reflects the poets handpicked, concise selection, showcasing work rich with humor and eros and a kind of simplicity that succeeds in engaging the reader in the first few lines (Billy Collins).
From the enduring My Son My Executioner to Names of Horses to Without, Donald Halls best poems deliver a banquet in the mouth (Charles Simic) and an aching elegance (Baltimore Sun).For the first-time reader or an old friend, these are, above all others, the poems to read, reread, and remember.
6. Life Work
DescriptionThe distinguished poet on the meaning of work, solitude, and love in this "extraordinary nobility and wisdom" (The New York Times)
When Donald Hall moved to his grandparents' New Hampshire farm in 1975, his work as a writer and a life devoted to the liteary arts must have seemed remote from the harsh physical labor of his ancestors. However, he reveals a similar kind of artistry in the lives of his grandparents, Kate and Wesley. From them he learned that the devotion to craftbe it canning vegetables, writing poems, or carting manurecreates its own special discipline and an "absorbedness" that no wage can compensate.
In this "sustained meditation on work as the key to personal happiness" (Los Angeles Times), we see how the writer has modeled his own life on his family's lives of work, solitude, and love. When Hall comes face to face with his own mortality halfway through writing this book, we understand both his obsession with work and its ultimate consolation.
7. White Apples and the Taste of Stone: Selected Poems 1946-2006
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8. The Fork Without Hunger