Jim Harrison: Complete Poems

Jim Harrison

Due to high demand, the first printing of the single volume of Complete Poems is no longer available directly through Copper Canyon Press. Copies are currently available at a wide range of independent stores like Elliott Bay, City Lights, Lemuria, Horizon Books, and Square Books. The second printing is underway and will be ready to ship during National Poetry Month, April 2022. Limited Edition Box Sets of Complete Poems are available as a donor premium through The Heart's Work: Jim Harrison's Poetic Legacy. Box Sets are currently being assembled and will be ready to ship in early 2022.

Jim Harrison: Complete Poems is the definitive collection from one of America’s iconic writers. Introduced by activist and naturalist writer Terry Tempest Williams, this tour de force contains every poem Harrison published over his fifty-year career and displays his wide range of poetic styles and forms. Here are the nature-based lyrics of his early work, the high-velocity ghazals, a harrowing prose-poem “correspondence” with a Russian suicide, the riverine suites, fearless meditations inspired by the Zen monk Crazy Cloud, and a joyous conversation in haiku-like gems with friend and fellow poet Ted Kooser. Weaving throughout these 1000 pages are Harrison’s legendary passions and appetites, his love songs and lamentations, and a clarion call to pay attention to the life you are actually living. The Complete Poems confirms that Jim Harrison is a talented storyteller with a penetrating eye for details, or as Publishers Weekly called him, “an untrammeled renegade genius… a poet talking to you instead of around himself, while doing absolutely brilliant and outrageous things with language.”

ISBN: 9781556595936

Format: Hardcover


My bird-watching friends tell me, “You’re always seeing birds that don’t
exist.” And I answer that my eye seems to change nearly everything it
sees and is also drawn to making something out of nothing, a habit since
childhood. I’m so unreliable no one asks me, “What’s that?” knowing
that a sandhill crane in a remote field can become a yellow Volkswagen.
In moments, the girl’s blue dress becomes the green I prefer. Words
themselves can adopt confusing colors, which can become a burden
while reading. You don’t have to become what you already are, which is
a relief. Today in Sierra Vista while carrying six plastic bags of groceries
I fell down. Can that be a curb? What else? The ground rushed up and I
looked at gravel inches away, a knee and hands leaking blood. Time and
pain are abstractions you can’t see but you know when they’re with you
like a cold hard wind. It’s time to peel my heart off my sleeve. It sits there
red and glistening like a pig’s heart on Grandpa’s farm in 1947 and I have
to somehow get it back into my body.

About the Author

Jim Harrison (1937–2016) was the author of over three dozen books, including Legends of the Fall and Dalva, and served as the food columnist for the magazines Brick and Esquire. He published fourteen volumes of poetry, the final being Dead Man’s Float (2016). His work has been translated into two dozen languages and produced as four feature-length films. As a young poet he co-edited Sumac magazine with fellow poet Dan Gerber, and earned fellowships from the National Endowment for the …

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“[Harrison] may no longer be with us, but this book grabs you by the collar and tells you in eleven hundred ways to wake up.” —Literary Hub

“An untrammeled renegade genius… Here is a poet talking to you instead of around himself, while doing
absolutely brilliant and outrageous things with language.” —Publishers Weekly

“The Essential Poems provides a good introduction—or reintroduction—to the work of this singular writer…
these pieces illustrate Harrison’s range and his ease with various formats, from lyric poems to meditative
suites to prose poems. They also spotlight his deep, rugged kinship with rural landscapes and the natural
world, where ‘the cost of flight is landing.’” —The Washington Post

“It is hard-boiled poetry, some of the best of its kind, and one is not surprised to know that Harrison has
written very tough novels… His poetic vision is at the heart of it all.” —Harper’s

“This robust volume is a testament to the fortitude of a great American poet’s work… [a] landmark collection.”―Booklist, starred review

“In a collection that spans decades of living and writing, there are poems of every character, many of them superb.”―Library Journal, starred review


Library Journal‘s “Most Anticipated Poetry Books of 2021”