Read The Throne of the Third Heaven of the Nations Millennium General Assembly: Poems Collected and New by Denis Johnson Free Online


Ebook The Throne of the Third Heaven of the Nations Millennium General Assembly: Poems Collected and New by Denis Johnson read! Book Title: The Throne of the Third Heaven of the Nations Millennium General Assembly: Poems Collected and New
The author of the book: Denis Johnson
Language: English
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 868 KB
Edition: Harper Perennial
Date of issue: April 12th 1996
ISBN: 0060926961
ISBN 13: 9780060926960

Read full description of the books:

A 1995 gathering of Denis Johnson’s four published books of poetry, from 1969 to 1987, plus about 20 pages of then new poems.

A little back story: My wife and I have very different literary tastes. When we moved in together and intermingled our books there was hardly any overlap; a Faulkner or two, maybe a Henry James, an anomalous Italo Calvino. She also had a small collection of poetry (Sharon Olds, Franz Wright, Anne Sexton), as opposed to my quite large collection of more experimental stuff, and these books of hers I was particular reluctant to merge with mine. Some I actually consigned to the basement, others I put in stacks down on the floor beside my poetry shelf, to collect dust and fur balls. This Denis Johnson collection was one of those. I would occasionally dip into it, because I liked some of his novels so much, but every time I would come away actually kind of angry; the poems just seemed so slipshod and random in their construction, prose chopped up into “poetry” nuggets. This book actually filled me with a mild disgust. I have a benign mania about covering all my hardcovers with protective plastic, but I refused to give to this that TLC, even if it was a first edition. Screw it!

Then a little while ago Mike Emmons here on GR rated DJ's poetry, which inspired me to pick this book up off the floor, and with a clear unprejudiced mind I began to read. I found my old cringes and spleen spurts surface immediately while reading The Man Among the Seals, his first collection, but I soldiered on, partly because they were so easy to read that they allowed me to think of other things. One or two struck me as effective in a Naked Poetry workshoppy way, but blah and tepid cringe for the most part. Inner Weather raised the stakes slightly. At least he did away with the lower case “i” deployed in his first book, but still kind of not too interesting; good stories but slack language. So I skipped quite a few poems to get to The Incognito Lounge…

Denis Johnson must have been visited by a Poetry Angel while writing this. It is almost eerie how much better this book is than those that preceded it. There is a new world dawning in the verbal risks he takes, straining sense to find pure poetry. I know very little about his life, but maybe he was doing just enough drugs at this point, and had developed just enough literary chops, that he was able to merge the wild man with compassionate X-ray eyes with the belle-lettrist at the height of his powers.

After these heights there’s another falling off, a slackening, with his next volume, The Veil, and also the new poems. But to his credit through all of his books there is tremendous insight and feeling and compassion, and within his chosen milieu of the down-and-outers, vagrants, drug takers, and seedy survival there is a welcome absence of himself, a total lack of self-absorption, like Bukowski, say (though I'm not knocking Buk). Many of the poems are first person, but often a persona is employed, even as one knows he’s writing from first-hand experience. He remains for the most part behind-the-scenes, which adds a mystery and power to his work. He's there, he's living that life, but he's given himself over to the recording angel. Through reading this I learned very little about Denis Johnson the personality, but I have learned much about his profound and shadowy emotional involvement with people and things, his far-ranging sensibility (from gutter to glory), and his all-enveloping disembodied compassion. He had a good run when he was good.

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Ebook The Throne of the Third Heaven of the Nations Millennium General Assembly: Poems Collected and New read Online! Poet, playwright and author Denis Johnson was born in Munich, West Germany in 1949 and was raised in Tokyo, Manila and Washington. He holds a masters' degree from the University of Iowa and has received many awards for his work, including a Lannan Fellowship in Fiction (1993), a Whiting Writer's Award (1986), the Aga Khan Prize for Fiction from the Paris Review for Train Dreams, and most recently, the National Book Award for Fiction (2007).



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