Men in the Off Hours
By Anne Carson
(Vintage Canada, Paperback, 9780676973563, 176pp.)
Publication Date: February 13, 2001
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Anne Carson has been acclaimed by her peers as the most imaginative poet writing today. In a recent profile, The New York Times Magazine paid tribute to her amazing ability to combine the classical and the modern, the mundane and the surreal, in a body of work that is sure to endure. In Men in the Off Hours, Carson offers further proof of her tantalizing gifts. Reinventing figures as diverse as Oedipus, Emily Dickinson and Audubon, she sets up startling juxtapositions: Lazarus among video paraphernalia, Virginia Woolf and Thucydides discussing war, Edward Hopper paintings illuminated by St. Augustine. And in a final prose poem, Carson meditates movingly on the recent death of her mother. With its quiet, acute spirituality, its fearless wit and sensuality, and its joyful understanding that "the fact of the matter for humans is imperfection," Men in the Off Hours shows us a fiercely individual poet at her best.
Anne Carson was twice a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award; was honored with the 1996 Lannan Award and the 1997 Pushcart Prize, both for poetry; and was named a MacArthur Fellow in 2000. In 2001 she received the T. S. Eliot Prize for Poetry – the first woman to do so; the Griffin Poetry Prize; and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. She currently teaches at the University of Michigan.