Cover for ROBERTS: The Silent Singer: New and Selected Poems

The Silent Singer

New and Selected Poems

"Roberts offers 97 poems from six collections dating from 1984, and all of them rely on his life as the driving force behind the work. . . . [Roberts poems] show the importance of memory in a poet's development of a personal history that speaks to the history of every person. . . . Very readable poetry."--Charles Johnson, Home News Tribune, East Brunswick, New Jersey

"From childhood through Catholicism, family, pushing a Cougar out of snow, the glory of getting blown, Nature's consoling beauty, learning to write in cursive, Roberts has built one of the most authentic and precise portraits of a life in contemporary American poetry. His music is the solid straightforward plain sound of a man who knows the laws on earth, the loves and limitations of human intimacy and solitude. There is not a faked note anywhere here, not an empty phrase, not one gesture calculated to impress. The miraculous ordinary moment-by-moment life everyone leads is the bright clean core of this important book--important because it does so well what Chekhov says is the hardest thing a writer has to do: present the facts."--Stephen Berg Praise for Len Roberts "I see Len Roberts's poems as parables of suffering and redemption, rooted in the cold ground of upstate New York and Pennsylvania. . . . He is a great presence, a great moral presence: and one of the most trustworthy and gracious poets writing today."--Gerald Stern "These poems are true in the sense that they address the complicated and universal feelings of fear, confusion, heartbreak, anger, and love that we all experience. Len Roberts is one of the most important poets we have."--Daniel Donaghy, Hollins Critic "There is always in [Roberts's] poems a gentle sensibility, a probing intelligence and an acute attentiveness to what is urgent in our lives that tempers the poems and that situates them firmly in that precious space between poet and reader which is our common bond and common exaltation."--C. K. Williams


Winner of several major awards, including the Guggenheim, National Endowment for the Arts, and National Poetry Series, Len Roberts is a powerful and uncompromising poet whose work redeems a turbulent past. The Silent Singer offers the best of Roberts's past work as well as a sizable collection of new poems.

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