Elizabeth Bishop (1911-79) remains one of America's most celebrated and admired postwar poets. She won both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award for her verse, and served as Poetry Consultant at the Library of Congress in 1949-50.
""The Collected Prose" appears in the same spruce format as "The Complete Poems," and it doubles what we possess of Bishop's writing. Robert Giroux [her longtime editor and friend] has arranged the book according to a sketch found among Bishop's papers after her death; he has reconstructed from nearly complete fragments her pungent memoir of her mentor, Marianne Moore; and in his affectionate introduction, he has brought to life the circumstances under which these pieces were written. . . . It is no exaggeration to say that these stories will be read beside her poems, as Keat's letters are beside his. . . . 'The Sea & Its Shore' and 'In Prison' [are] worthy of Kafka or Poe."--David Kalstone, " The New York Times Book Review" "A stunning collection. . . . These are the kind of stories you should linger over, savor, and rediscover again and again."--Elin Schoen, "Mademoiselle" "A record of merciless observation, full of surprises both tragic and comic. . . . Again and again, in these pages, it is the precision that astonishes. . . . So often what Bishop gives us are these small, exact glimpses of the mundane, shorn of all rhetorical indulgence. But when looking is thus transformed, will any word but 'vision' do?"--April Bernard, "Newsday"