The Government Lake: Last Poems (Hardcover)

The Government Lake: Last Poems By James Tate Cover Image
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The stunning, startling collection that is also the last work from a major poet

A woman named Mildred starts laying eggs after feathers from wild poultry begin coming down the chimney. A man becomes friends with a bank robber who abducts him and eventually rues his captor’s death. A baby is born transparent.

James Tate’s work, filled with unexpected turns and deadpan exaggeration, “fanciful and grave, mundane and transcendent,” (New York Times) has been among the most defining and significant of our time. In his last collection before his death in 2015, Tate’s dark yet whimsical humor, his emotional acuity, and his keen ear for the absurd are on full display in prose poems that finely constructed and lyrical, surrealistic and provocative.

With The Government Lake, James Tate reminds us why he is one of the great poets of our age and one of the true masters of the form. 

About the Author

James Tate was born in Kansas City, Missouri, in 1943. His first book, The Lost Pilot, won the Yale Series of Younger Poets Award in 1967. Tate wrote nineteen books and won the National Book Award, the Pulitzer Prize, the William Carlos Williams Award, and the Wallace Stevens Award. He served as a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Tate lived in Pelham, Massachusetts, and taught for years at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. 

Praise For…

“The rare American poet who managed to make poems that were at once fanciful and grave, mundane and transcendent. . . . His work is singular in American poetry for marrying goofball humor and childish jouissance to a lyricism that never seems cheap or self-serious-an unusual achievement.” — New York Times Book Review

“James Tate never ceases to astonish, dismay, delight, confuse, tickle, and generally improve the quality of our lives.” — John Ashbery

“A poem out of nothing…is Tate’s genius…Just about anything can happen next in this kind of poetry and that is its attraction.” — Charles Simic

Product Details
ISBN: 9780062914712
ISBN-10: 0062914715
Publisher: Ecco
Publication Date: July 2nd, 2019
Pages: 96
Language: English