Hungerfield and Other Poems (1954)

Robinson Jeffers showed that he still had it at age 67 with the publication of Hungerfield and Other Poems. The lyrics Carmel Point and The Deer Lay Down Their Bones were perhaps the stand-outs. The hybrid poem Hungerfield, which might be called Jeffers’ eulogy to his late wife Una, contains one of his more honest and heart-felt addresses as well as a distinctive narrative. Skunks is one of my personal favorites, principally for its poetic expression of a historical insight (time turns monsters into geniuses). De Rerum Virtute is a worthwhile read, though I don’t think it addresses the subject of beauty deeply enough, and it strikes me as rather awkward. Fire is cool because, well, because it’s about fire … and it begins with some beautiful imagery — oh, and it covers Ventana country as well.