Books

‘Faithful and Virtuous Night,’ ‘Red Juice,’ ‘Lunch Poems’

FAITHFUL AND VIRTUOUS NIGHT

By Louise Glück

Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 80 pp., $23

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Shifting between prosaic passages and her more familar lyric investigations of family, loss, and time’s tide, Glück’s new collection of poems finds cinematic scope through a deeply personal lens. Moving and rich, her mastery of what she knows is matched only by her ease with the uncertain. “A word drops into the mist,” she writes, “like a child’s ball into high grass.”

RED JUICE:

Poems 1998-2008

By Hoa Nguyen

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Wave, 272 pp., $30

An extraordinary collection of poems taken from Nguyen’s chapbooks, journals, and out-of-print volumes over a decade, “Red Juice” is a bonus for ardent fans of the poet, and a fine introduction for those new to her wit and way with giving flight to the weight of everday life — “a sort of bright blackness.”

LUNCH POEMS:

50th Anniversary Edition

By Frank O’Hara

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City Lights, 104 pp., $14.95

There’s always room for “Lunch Poems.” Fifty years after their first publication, the poems of Frank O’Hara’s breakthough volume are still in such a hurry. This new printing sports a preface by John Ashbery, an editor’s note by Lawrence Ferlinghetti, and reproductions of unpublished letters between Ferlinghetti and O’Hara. The poems are wonderful reminders of the world we keep missing as it rushes by: “So many things in the air!”

MICHAEL ANDOR BRODEUR

Michael Andor Brodeur can be reached at mbrodeur@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @MBrodeur.
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