Crossing the Equator: New and Selected Poems 1972-2004

by Nicholas Christopher

  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN-13/ EAN: 9780156031400
  • ISBN-10: 015603140X
  • Pages: 240
  • Publication Date: 04/02/2007
  • Carton Quantity: 44
About the Book
About the Author
Excerpts
Reviews
  • About the Book

    Nicholas Christopher has been praised as one of America’s most important poets by such literary talents as John Ashbery, Charles Simic, James Merrill, and Anthony Hecht. Crossing the Equator collects Christopher’s best work from the past three decades and includes a section of new poems that are among his finest.

    Cold missiles and a rain

    of embers accompany the men

    who slide like shadows into the city

    faces mud-smeared

    stones for teeth no eyes

    who slit the throats of everyone

    they encounter until breaking down

    my door they drag me into the darkness

    that floods the corridor

    and lock me in an icy chamber

    —from "THE LAST HOURS OF LAÓDIKÊ, SISTER OF HEKTOR"

    Subjects

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  • About the Author
  • Excerpts

    Lake Como

    The searchlight of a February moon

    at the end of the street

    bare trees black railing

    an eastern star set like a pearl atop a steeple

    that shadows the doorway

    where the one-armed card sharp squats

    shuffling his deck on a milk crate

    waiting for the No. 6 bus to discharge

    the off-duty cop the seamstress

    the drunken mechanic and the clerk on crutches

    who pauses before his building to watch

    the mechanic lose three dollars at blackjack

    and then stiffly ascends the five flights

    to his two rooms on a shaftway

    hanging his coat on a hook

    and sitting down at the table

    on which this morning he placed

    a soup bowl and spoon

    a tin of crackers and the crossword

    puzzle he had been laboring over

    beneath the gaze of his late wife

    her color photograph propped up in a small frame

    a young woman in a boxy dress and felt cap

    waving shyly by the edge of a lake

    where over her shoulder beneath a clear sky

    a sailboat rides the wind

    passengers on the polished deck

    gazing at the glowing mountain peaks

    the cypresses lining the shore

    and the pink palazzi with ancient gardens

    these men and women in white

    who seem to live upon the water

    gliding among themselves oblivious to strife

    and all else that wears a body down

    some sipping from crystal goblets

    others just drinking in the light

    Copyright © 2004 by Nicholas Christopher

    All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced

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    Requests for permission to make copies of any part of the work

    should be mailed to the following address:

    Permissions Department, Harcourt, Inc., 6277 Sea Harbor Drive,

    Orlando, Florida 32887-6777.

  • Reviews

    PRAISE FOR CROSSING THE EQUATOR

    "To read [Christopher’s] richly honed and sensuous work, which has so much tensile strength, is to visit other worlds and then return to our own, disturbed by time, but also refreshed and reawakened."—THE WASHINGTON POST BOOK WORLD

    "Nicholas Christopher[’s] . . . three decades of poems, lyric and narrative, can be read through with enormous pleasure and considerable wonder."—LOS ANGELES TIMES BOOK REVIEW

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