Poet Feature: Mary Oliver

Tuesday, April 18th

As part of National Poetry Month, we're celebrating by featuring a wide variety of poets!  Today's featured writer is Mary Oliver.

Born in 1935, Oliver took early inspiration from the work of Edna St. Vincent Millay.  As a teenager, she lived briefly in the late Millay's house, helping Edna's sister Norma to organize the poet's papers.  Though she attended both Ohio State University and Vassar College, Oliver left before receiving a degree from either institution and focused on her writing.  Her poetry is deceptively simple, free of artifice and frequently drawing on imagery of the natural world and of the interplay between humanity and nature.

Her first collection of poetry, No Voyage and Other Poems, was released in 1963, and Oliver rapidly gained critical acclaim.  Her fifth collection, American Primitive, won the 1983 Pulitzer Prize, and her 1992 collection, New and Selected Poems, won the National Book Award.  She has been compared to Walt Whitman, Elizabeth Bishop, and even William Blake.  Critic Richard Tillinghast noted that "her familiarity with the natural world has an uncomplicated, nineteenth-century feeling.”  Though best known for poems that paint a vivid picture of the natural world, Oliver doesn't shy away from portraying another facet of nature: human nature.  Her later works have begun to explore the inner landscape of humanity with the same keen eye as the outside world. 

Oliver lives in Provincetown, Massachusetts.  Her most recent book of poetry is Felicity.

A Thousand Mornings: Poems Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780143124054
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - September 24th, 2013

Blue Horses: Poems Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780143127819
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Published: Penguin Books - October 11th, 2016

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Dog Songs: Thirty-Five Dog Songs and One Essay Cover Image
$26.95
ISBN: 9781594204784
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Press - October 8th, 2013

Thirst Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780807068977
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Beacon Press (MA) - September 1st, 2007

Felicity: Poems Cover Image
$24.95
ISBN: 9781594206764
Availability: Available to ship immediately
Published: Penguin Press - October 13th, 2015

New and Selected Poems, Volume One Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780807068779
Availability: Available to ship immediately
Published: Beacon Press - April 15th, 2004

New and Selected Poems, Volume 2 Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780807068878
Availability: Available to ship immediately
Published: Beacon Press (MA) - April 1st, 2007

Why I Wake Early: New Poems Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9780807068793
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Published: Beacon Press (MA) - April 15th, 2005

American Primitive Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780316650045
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Published: Back Bay Books - April 30th, 1983

Red Bird Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780807068939
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Published: Beacon Press - April 1st, 2009

Evidence: Poems Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9780807069059
Availability: Available to ship immediately
Published: Beacon Press - September 14th, 2010