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诗人玛丽·奥利弗去世:快乐的孤独者 | 诗通社 | 公海赌船国际娱乐场
 
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诗人玛丽·奥利弗去世▄▓:快乐的孤独者


2019-01-19


(新京报)据外媒报道,美国诗人、普利策奖得主玛丽·奥利弗(Mary Olive▓█)于美国当地时间1月17日因淋巴瘤病逝于家中,享年83岁。她曾在她的诗歌《当死亡来临时》中写道█■▄,“当它结束时,我想说:我的一生/是一个嫁给惊喜的新娘。”

(When it’s over, I want to say: all my life/I was a bride married to amazement.███)


 

玛丽·奥利弗在2010年的加州女性会议上发表讲话,摄影:Kevork Djansezian,来源▓▓:Getty Images。

 

1935 年9月10日,玛丽·奥利弗出生于俄亥俄州枫树岭市,父亲是一名教师▄■▄,母亲是一所小学的工作人员。因为“家庭失调”,奥利弗的童年“非常艰难”,常常受到虐待■■■,敏感的她只好遁入诗歌之中,“用言语创造了一个世界”,并视诗歌为她的“救赎”。奥利弗很早就明确了以写作作为自己终身事业的决心▄■▄■,她13岁开始写诗,1955年进入俄亥俄州大学,在那里读完一年级后,获得瓦萨大学的奖学金▓▄▓▄,便转学到瓦萨大学,但同样只读了一年,她就放弃了学业,专心写作▄▓。

 

在此后的数十年中▓█▄■,奥利弗长年隐居山林,其创作多以山野自然为对象,探索自然与精神世界之间深刻而隐秘的联系,被称为美国当代“归隐诗人”▄■▓。在思想谱系上,奥利弗深受惠特曼和禅学影响,创作题材涵盖自然、信仰▄▓、存在等话题,诗句短小隽永,富有灵性,且深具哲理▓█。奥利弗并不总是受到评论家的赏识,但她仍然是美国最受欢迎的诗人之一,受到很多人的喜爱,先后获得过普利策奖和美国国家图书奖█■▄。

 

2018年,玛丽·奥利弗的首部中文版诗集《去爱那可爱的事物》出版。

 



(The New York Times███)

Mary Oliver, 83, Prize-Winning Poet of the Natural World, Is Dead


By Margalit Fox
Jan. 17, 2019

Mary Oliver, a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet whose work, with its plain language and minute attention to the natural world, drew a wide following while dividing critics, died on Thursday at her home in Hobe Sound, Fla. She was 83.

Her literary executor, Bill Reichblum, confirmed the death. Ms. Oliver had been treated for lymphoma, which was first diagnosed in 2015.

A prolific writer with more than 20 volumes of verse to her credit, Ms. Oliver received a Pulitzer Prize in 1984 for her collection “American Primitive,” published by Little, Brown & Company. She won a National Book Award in 1992 for “New and Selected Poems,” published by Beacon Press.

Ms. Oliver, whose work appeared often in The New Yorker and other magazines, was a phenomenon: a poet whose work sold strongly. Her books frequently appeared on the best-seller list of the Poetry Foundation, which uses data from Nielsen BookScan, a service that tracks book sales, putting her on a par with Billy Collins, the former poet laureate of the United States, as one of the best-selling poets in the country.

Her poems, which are built of unadorned language and accessible imagery, have a pedagogical, almost homiletic quality. It was this, combined with their relative brevity, that seemed to endear her work to a broad public, including clerics, who quoted it in their sermons; poetry therapists, who found its uplifting sensibility well suited to their work; composers, like Ronald Perera and Augusta Read Thomas, who set it to music; and celebrities like Laura Bush and Maria Shriver.

All this, combined with the throngs that turned out for her public readings, conspired to give Ms. Oliver, fairly late in life, the aura of a reluctant, bookish rock star.

Throughout her work, Ms. Oliver was occupied with intimate observations of flora and fauna, as many of her titles — “Mushrooms,” “Egrets,” “The Swan,” “The Rabbit,” “The Waterfall” — attest. Read on one level, these poems are sensualist still lifes: Often set in and around the woods, marshes and tide pools of Provincetown, Mass., where she lived for more than 40 years, they offer impeccable descriptions of the land and its nonhuman tenants in a spare, formally conservative, conversational style.

In “Spring,” here in its entirety, she wrote:
I lift my face to the pale flowers
of the rain. They’re soft as linen,
clean as holy water. Meanwhile
my dog runs off, noses down packed leaves
into damp, mysterious tunnels.
He says the smells are rising now
stiff and lively; he says the beasts
are waking up now full of oil,
sleep sweat, tag-ends of dreams. The rain
rubs its shining hands all over me.
My dog returns and barks fiercely, he says
each secret body is the richest advisor ,
deep in the black earth such fuming
nuggets of joy!


For her abiding communion with nature, Ms. Oliver was often compared to Walt Whitman and Robert Frost. For her quiet, measured observations, and for her fiercely private personal mien (she gave many readings but few interviews, saying she wanted her work to speak for itself), she was likened to Emily Dickinson.

Ms. Oliver often described her vocation as the observation of life, and it is clear from her texts that she considered the vocation a quasi-religious one. Her poems — those about nature as well as those on other subjects — are suffused with a pulsating, almost mystical spirituality, as in the work of the American Transcendentalists or English poets like William Blake and Gerard Manley Hopkins.

Readers were also drawn to Ms. Oliver’s poems by their quality of confiding intimacy; to read one is to accompany her on one of her many walks through the woods or by the shore. Poems often came to her on these walks, and she prepared for this eventuality by secreting pencils in the woods near her home .

Throughout Ms. Oliver’s career, critical reception of her work was mixed. Some reviewers were put off by the surface simplicity of her poems and, in later years, by her populist reach. Reviewing her first collection, “No Voyage,” in The New York Times Book Review in 1965, James Dickey wrote, “She is good, but predictably good,” adding:

“She never seems quite to be in her poems, as adroit as some of them are, but is always outside them, putting them together from the available literary elements.”

More recently, David Orr, the poetry columnist for The New York Times Book Review, was even more dismissive. In 2011, he referred to Ms. Oliver as a writer “about whose poetry one can only say that no animals appear to have been harmed in the making of it.” (That comment drew a retort from Ruth Franklin of The New Yorker, who wrote in an admiring article about Ms. Oliver in 2017, “The joke falls flat, considering how much of Oliver’s work revolves around the violence of the natural world.”)

Ms. Oliver’s champions argued that what lay beneath her work’s seemingly unruffled surface was a dark, brooding undertow, which together with the surface constituted a cleareyed exploration of the individual’s place in the cosmos.

“Her corpus is deceptively elementary,” the writer Alice Gregory says in an essay on the website of the Poetry Foundation. “But you miss a lot by allowing the large language to overshadow the more muted connective tissue. Paying such crude attention will not grant you the fortifying effects Oliver has to offer.”

Mary Oliver was born on Sept. 10, 1935, in Cleveland to Edward and Helen (Vlasak) Oliver, and grew up in Maple Heights, Ohio, a suburb of Cleveland. Her father was a teacher and her mother a secretary at an elementary school.

In one of her rare interviews, with Ms. Shriver in O: The Oprah Magazine in 2011, Ms. Oliver spoke of having been sexually abused as a child, though she did not elaborate.

“I had a very dysfunctional family, and a very hard childhood,” she told Ms. Shriver. “So I made a world out of words. And it was my salvation.”

Leaving home as a teenager — she would study briefly at Ohio State University and Vassar College but took no degree — Ms. Oliver spontaneously drove to Steepletop, Edna St. Vincent Millay’s former home in Austerlitz, N.Y., near the Massachusetts border. Ms. Oliver lived at Steepletop for the next half-dozen years, helping Millay’s sister Norma organize her papers.

In the late 1950s, on a return visit to Steepletop, Ms. Oliver met Molly Malone Cook , a photographer, who became her life partner and literary agent. Ms. Cook died in 2005. No immediate family members survive.

Ms. Oliver taught at Bennington College and elsewhere. Her other poetry collections include “The River Styx, Ohio” (1972), “House of Light” (1990), “The Leaf and the Cloud” (2000), “Evidence” (2009), “Blue Horses” (2014) and “Felicity” (2015).

Her prose books include two about the craft of poetry, “Rules for the Dance” (1998) and “A Poetry Handbook” (1994), and “Long Life: Essays and Other Writings” (2004).

Given its seeming contradiction — shallow and profound, uplifting and elegiac — Ms. Oliver’s verse is perhaps best read as poetic portmanteau, one that binds up both the primal joy and the primal melancholy of being alive.

For her, each had at its core a similar wild ecstasy. In one of her best-known poems, “When Death Comes,” she wrote:

When it’s over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.
When it’s over, I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.
I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.

Correction: January 17, 2019
An earlier version of this obituary misspelled part of Ms. Oliver’s mother’s name. She was Helen (Vlasak) Oliver, not Vlasat.

Ana Fota contributed reporting.

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  编辑:NS  来源▓▓:诗通社综合整理


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