Today in ENG 206, we looked at the poetry of Sylvia Plath, Anne Sexton, and Louise Glück. While I like the poetry of Plath and Sexton, I am overwhelmed by the poetry of Glück (pronounced Glick). About a year ago, a close friend introduced me to Glück and gave me Glück’s book, Averno. I’ve been haunted by this poet ever since. A Pulitzer prize winner, and U.S. Poet Laureate, Glück is a prominent voice among American poets today. I was happy to see her included in our anthology.
Averno is a lake in Italy that the Romans thought went all the way down and served as an entrance to the underworld. I looked back through Averno and found some meaningful lines I had underlined last year, lines that primarily relate to Persephone and her abduction by Hades.
“It is like losing a year of your life./To what would you lose a year of your life?”
“When Hades decided he loved this girl/ he built for her a duplicate of earth,/ everything the same, down to the meadow,/but with a bed added.”
“A disaster like this/leaves no mark on the earth.”
I intend to get the other books of Glück in the future. She is worth reading, and she will make you think and feel.
I guess you know she was US Poet Laureate in 2004. I was surprised at the time, because her poetry was so different from the previous PL, Billy Collins.