Star Journal is a selection of poems from Christopher Buckley’s twenty previous collections, from 1980-2014.Past praise from Philip Levine: “The poems are modest, straight forward, intensely lyrical and totally accessible. . . . This is a humble poetry of great truths and profound emotions that never overstates its concerns for the events both in and above the world. It rewards countless readings and never betrays itself.”—Ploughshares
Time and the shifts of time are the burden: not simply time as recollection or loss, but also and everywhere the persistent loneliness of star time, mastodon time, so that finally these are poems in which reflection takes on uncommon amplitude and presence. And all this would be nothing, of course, without the language, which is the glory of these poems.
Christopher Buckley's selected poems, pieces from 1979 to 2014, are intimate, lyrical portraits from a down-to-earth speaker aware of his smallness. . . . This is not a flashy book of poems but an appreciative, meditative one that lingers on the specificities of life. . . . Star Journal is a collection that is keenly aware of, but expertly deals with concepts of scope, space, and time.
Christopher Buckley's gift for wide-ranging thinking meshes so gracefully with lovingly tender details, he feels like a companion voice for all time—a Hikmet, a Neruda, yes.
There is a deep nostalgia here, but also wisdom and common sense, and beautiful writing. I welcome him at his maturist, poet of stardust.
The poems are verbally so rich, generous, out-loud (I can't not intone the rhetorical flourishes), inclusive, wry. I like especially the orientation to the large-picture physics/cosmology at the same time that (Buckley) relates his own past. . . . I like the tone—how else to address one's mortality & mixed luck except with irony & affection stirred with gratitude?
Some poets like only celestial music, other the grit of the streets, but Buckley engages winningly with both.
Prize-winning poet Buckley has a unique poetic voice, a sort of breathless, long-sentenced style that is gripping and captivating . . . . These are poems of immortality and extinction that can still make you smile. He has an exquisite ear for language and a gutsy way of blending bravado with humility.
There is a quietness to these poems and breakouts of lyrical intensity that define Buckley as a master of the art.
As straightforward as a yardstick, measuring by star-light, the weight of a butterfly heart. A book of poet magic, a proverbial pot ofgtold. 'Today's Book of Poetry' defies you to open any page of this book and not be entertained and enlightened.
Christopher Buckley has published twenty books of poetry, several chapbooks and limited editions, and three memoirs. He is the editor of six poetry anthologies as well as critical books on the poets Philip Levine, Larry Levis, and Luis Omar Salinas. Buckley is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship in Poetry, two National Endowment for the Arts Grants, a Fulbright Award, four Pushcart prizes, and two awards from the Poetry Society of America, among other awards. Buckley has taught writing and creative writing at several universities, and is emeritus professor of creative writing at the University of California, Riverside.learn more