Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror: Poems (Penguin Poets) [John Ashbery] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. John Ashbery’s most renowned. Written in a style often described as verbal expressionism, “Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror” is the title poem in the collection for which John Ashbery won a. John Ashberry won the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, and the National Book Critics Circle Award for Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror. Ashberry.

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In many ways, affect is precisely what I am looking for in poetry, combined with the poet’s insights into things. May 09, Steve rated it did not like it Shelves: But also Ashbery sizing up the same kind of moral question over and over a dozen times in the space of a poem, and with dozens of poems including the formidable and exhausting kind of index of jojn in the title poem it just wrung me utterly dry.

The “Poem in Three Parts” begins with a startling phrase “Once I mriror a guy blow me” but proceeds to an exploration of how one responds to experience: John later introduced me to the music of Glazunov, as well as other classical composers, when a core group of four members from class gathered at his apartment for an informal seminar.

Auden for the Yale Younger Poets Series. The pity of it smarts, Makes hot tears spurt: Lists with This Book. When Ashbery was thirteen, his nine-year-old brother died of leukemia, an event that scarred his childhood with tragedy and loss.

I used to think they were all alike, That the present always looked the same to everybody But this confusion drains away as one Is always cresting into one’s present. Released from the fixed point to which it had mirorr previously anchored, that is, from Parmigianino’s portrait, the poem now embarks on a more loosely structured, philosophical exploration of the themes Ashbery has previously touched on, such as the soul’s response to art, and the reality of the present moment.


What it advertises, of course, is the artist’s vision of himself, a vision limited by the confines of the mirror which contains it and misshapen by the contours of that mirror. In these fragmentary perceptions, none of which make a complete sentence except for the last, Ashbery quickly sums up the painting’s features.

I can hear it mireor when I see it. Ashbery, in contrast, is forthright in his admission that a true reflection cannot in fact be conveyed, and that as humans, we are by our very nature cut off from ideal forms, from wholeness and unity, our souls imprisoned in our bodies, in our current existence, the way Parmigianino’s is symbolically captured within the portrait. Professor of Languages and Literature at Bard.

Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror |

Write a customer review. Follow VPR on Twitter http: Frequently, lines or sections are clear enough, but a poem as a whole will appear opaque.

Surrealist works incorporate elements of surprise and of unexpected juxtapositions.

This is an open group anyone can join and currently consisting of more than members. At once academic in that it is often difficult to decipher techniques and designed by way of its subject matter to appeal to a wide audience, Pop art asserted, in much the same way the abstract expressionism did, a faith in the idea of artistic possibility. A tough but very rewarding collection of excellent poems on the slipperiness of reality, our inability to ever grasp self-portriat, and the way it elides comprehension even at the very moment of perception.

Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror

It must move As little as possible. The artist’s own self-involvement has led to its isolation, Ashbery seems to be saying, whereas his own work of art, the poem, seeks to use art to identify ashbbery, to the world, to reality, to a consciousness of the present moment. Dear Janet Grau, Yes, you certainly may quote from the article. There is a sense in Ashbery’s work of cutting through the tendency to rationalize and to focus on the joy of experience in its diversity. Why throw in a hawk?


This book is difficult, modern poetry that may morror appeal to all readers.

His legacy is the embedded radical surprise s in a poem. Amazon Rapids Fun stories for kids on the go. My classes are really on a sort of low conversational level. Alexa Actionable Analytics for the Web. Are there any kinds of long cknvex that you would like to write in the future?

Self-Portrait In A Convex Mirror – Poem by John Ashbery

Such a startling response is likened by Ashbery to the bizarre experiences of one of nineteenth-century fantasy and science fiction writer E. Jun 05, Ben rated it it was ok Shelves: The appreciation of syntax–here is a poet finding the poetry of the American idiom, as Willi Perhaps his best, and his most accessible. Each poem includes lines and figures which are indivually striking and often beautiful; but the poems cannot be read discursively.

The book additionally contains numerous photographs of the artist’s works. For as Ashbery goes on to observe, what Parmigianino has accomplished is to capture something in the look on his face in the portrait that reminds the viewer of the idea of the soul.

The words are only speculation From the Sel-fportrait speculum, mirror: The title poem in John Ashbery’s new collection, Self Portrait in a Convex Mirrorbegins with a precise description of the remarkable painting by Parmigianino which inspired it.

God speed to you all etc. Stamelman further argues that the poem explores the contemporary world as a world that is slipping towards meaninglessness.

Read more Read less. The pity of it smarts, Makes hot tears spurt: Jul 02, Melissa rated it really liked it Shelves: This could have been our paradise: