Collected Poems 1943-2004
By Richard Wilbur
(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Hardcover, 9780151011056, 608pp.)
Publication Date: December 1, 2004
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Over the course of his distinguished sixty-year career, Richard Wilbur has written seventeen collections of poetry, four children's books, and numerous works in prose and translations. This comprehensive collection presents Wilbur's poems, including several new and never before published.
In trackless woods, it puzzled me to find
Four great rock maples seemingly aligned,
As if they had been set out in a row
Before some house a century ago,
To edge the property and lend some shade.
I looked to see if ancient wheels had made
Old ruts to which the trees ran parallel,
But there were none, so far as I could tell-
There'd been no roadway. Nor could I find the square
Depression of a cellar anywhere,
And so I tramped on further, to survey
Amazing patterns in a hornbeam spray
Or spirals in a pine cone, under trees
Not subject to our stiff geometries.
-from "In Trackless Woods"
RICHARD WILBUR, one of America’s most beloved poets, has served as poet