Corridor (Paperback)


By Saskia Hamilton

Graywolf Press, 9781555976750, 72pp.

Publication Date: April 29, 2014

List Price: 16.00*
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"Hamilton is able to sustain a complex narrative through stripped-down poems . . . leavened by a wry humor." —The New York Times Book Review

I wanted to read an essay in your wrist.
The afternoon seemed endless. Out the window,
a lane to the right was bending away,
taking with it the figure moving down it.
Alone for a quarter of an hour,
looking in, plotting the argument,
all the marks of lucidity
and brevity in that attempt,
that benefit of rhetoric:
the true but unlikely moment.
—from "Summered"

Corridor, Saskia Hamilton's third collection, is a study of motion and time. Its glanced landscapes, its lives seen in passing, render the immeasurable in broken narratives. These poems are succinct in order to travel quickly—they have unexpected distances within their reach. They are dauntless and alert in their apprehension of the natural kingdom at the frontier of so many unnatural ones. And they inhabit the realm of contemplation which, for Hamilton, is charged with eros.

About the Author

Saskia Hamilton edited Words in Air from Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Saskia Hamilton edited The Letters of Robert Lowell from Farrar, Straus and Giroux.Saskia Hamilton edited The Letters of Robert Lowell from Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Praise For Corridor: Poems

“Focused on each ‘rib and spine or/ rafter and beam' of language, Hamilton delivers a collection of deceptively brief, lean poems. . . . Strangers' voices drift in and out like mist, and there is always a studied lack of clarity that gives the collection an irresistible tension.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review

“The pulsing motor in each poem is keen intelligence about complex relationship and their unimpeachable truths. It is unlike anything else, Hamilton's fundamental use of soil and earth to make a cradle for significant ideas. These are terse honest emotions, internal struggles as subtext, held up against the simple logic of country life. She takes the rusted machinery of the world and makes it beautiful.” —Washington Independent Review of Books

“Hamilton's writing has been called spare and delicate, but neither of these quite gets at the effect of her poems, which are delicate only in the way a suspension bridge is: neither is marked by unnecessary ornament or fragility, and it would be a mistake to regard either as anything other than rigorously tough.” —Raymond McDaniel, Boston Review

“There is much to be discovered in this collection, where tenderness and detachment, intimacy and distance, conversation and poetry thoughtfully coexist. In Corridor, Saskia Hamilton displays a breadth of historical, poetical, and linguistic awareness I rarely find. I want to read these poems again and again as I look at their resounding, narrow spaces for clues to the humanity there.” —The Rumpus