Read Florida Poems by Campbell McGrath Online

florida-poems

Part fable, part diatribe, part elegy, part love song, this extraordinary fifth collection by Campbell McGrath makes poetry of the most unlikely of materials -- his home state of Florida. While at times poignantly personal, McGrath also returns for the first time to the characteristically comic and visionary public voice displayed in the renowned "Bob Hope Poem." Moving efPart fable, part diatribe, part elegy, part love song, this extraordinary fifth collection by Campbell McGrath makes poetry of the most unlikely of materials -- his home state of Florida. While at times poignantly personal, McGrath also returns for the first time to the characteristically comic and visionary public voice displayed in the renowned "Bob Hope Poem." Moving effortlessly from prehistory to the space age, he catalogues Florida's natural wonders and historical figureheads, from Ponce de León to Walt Disney, William Bartram to Chuck E. Cheese -- "the bewhiskered Mephistopheles of ring toss,/the diabolical vampire of our transcendent ideals." In the brilliant sociohistorical monologue of "The Florida Poem," McGrath employs the Fountain of Youth as a mythic symbol for both the tragic consequences of a society built on greed and cultural erasure and the diverse human potential, "which must become the fountain/for any communal future we might dare imagine."Place-bound and tightly focused, Campbell McGrath's message is nonetheless universal, as his penetrating vision of Florida is also a vision of America -- its history and hopes, failings and fulfillments, and the eternal force that transcends it all....

Title : Florida Poems
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780060527365
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 112 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Florida Poems Reviews

  • Craig Pittman
    2018-09-07 22:25

    I'm not big on poetry -- Seamus Heaney and "The Spoon River Anthology" and Poe's "The Raven" are about all I like. But I'm glad to add this book to my shelf. McGrath (winner of one of the MacArthur "genius" grants) has penned a collection here that ranges from fanciful to furious, with several stops for laugh lines. For instance, at one point he describes Chuck E. Cheese as "the bewhiskered Mephistopheles of ring toss,/the diabolical vampire of our transcendent ideals." He also says Orlando has "the character of a turnpike restroom."I particularly liked "The Orange," "William Bartram Beset by Crocodiles or Alligators," "Hemingway Dines on Boiled Shrimp and Beer," and the longest entry in this collection, "The Florida Poem," in which he ranges from prehistory to modern times to paint a portrait of his home state. It's a rambling piece that touches on "technocrats and mousketeer apparatchiks" and rambles "past Spanish moss and dangling chads, Apollo in flames and Arthur Godfrey's ukelele." It's quite a ride. I would have given him five stars except he contends nothing of earth-shaking import happened in Florida between Juan Ponce de Leon's discovery and the modern day, and that's simply not true.

  • Mistie
    2018-09-09 01:27

    Maybe it's just that I love anything about Florida, but I absolutely loved this poetry.

  • nicole
    2018-09-16 19:39

    mcgrath tried way too hard to be complicated. does that make any sense? some of it literally felt like word vomit, which, fine, if that’s what he was going for. there’s a lack of authenticity in this collection and this was not for me. i had expectations for it but i am disappointed. i almost DNF’ed it because it was just unbearable at points. i did enjoy some of the cheekier and straightforward poems, though.

  • Carol
    2018-09-10 02:29

    McGrath would probably be amused that I bought this years ago from a remainder book store at the St. Augustine Outlet Mall. I read this collection a second time this week and again enjoyed it. There is a lush sweep of irony, beauty and humor here, all characteristic of Florida, a curious state if there ever was one. McGrath teaches poetry in Miami and considers Florida his home state. Like most Floridans today, he is actually from elsewhere. Sadly, many Florida snowbirds have moved here to Atlanta. They do tacky things like plant Palm trees, which are ridiculous here in the Appalachian foothills.

  • Jonathan Tennis
    2018-09-20 20:33

    I believe this is the 3rd collection of McGrath poetry that I have read. While I did not enjoy this collection as much as his others, I love the subject of this book. I am a Floridian and I love this weird and often newsworthy wackiness that makes up this state. Some of my favorites from this book were:The Orange on p. 32-33 Because This Is Florida on p. 35Seashells, Manasota Key on p. 54-55Florida on p. 74-75And of course The Florida Poem starting on p. 79

  • C
    2018-09-17 03:17

    Some good moments in the beginning of the first section where McGrath tells the fable of a Florida-like city in the clouds. The second section contains more traditional Florida-themed poems. I especially liked "The Orange," "Mile Marker 73," and "The Manatee." Overall, nothing terribly fabulous, nothing incredibly offensive.

  • Gerry LaFemina
    2018-09-01 22:30

    Not McGrath's best book--it's ambitious, original (including a sci-fi-like allegorical sequence of poems about a city in the clouds to open the book, and a long poem chronicling the history of Florida at the end), but also erratic. Funny and irreverent, McGrath is a fine poet with a deeply original vision and voice.

  • Julie
    2018-09-19 02:39

    There's some fantastic stuff in here. Read "The Manatee" for a powerful jab. I really appreciate a lot of the images, while others left me a little dissatisfied. Overall, I love the book! I had the privilege of meeting Campbell McGrath before he gave a reading and he's a very funny, nice guy.

  • Ann
    2018-09-18 23:40

    Lovely, cruel, hilarious, mysterious visions of Florida past-present-future contained herein. This collection will resonate with me for sometime. The last, long poem must be read out loud -- well, all of the poems deserve a sounding out, even if it's just you and the dog.

  • Zach
    2018-09-12 23:30

    Just fine.

  • Gary McDowell
    2018-09-13 02:24

    Just didn't get into this one like I did Road Atlas. It was okay though.

  • Allen
    2018-08-30 00:44

    I was prepared to dislike this book as I'm not a huge McGrath fan but these poems take on a more regional and accessible tact than his other hipness.

  • Emily
    2018-09-22 20:30

    McGrath's poetry is eloquent description and fervent hope mercilessly coupled with bitter, wry anticapitalist rage.

  • Amanda
    2018-08-31 20:22

    I wish I would have written this book!