Year in Reading

A Year in Reading: Rabih Alameddine

By posted at 3:00 pm on December 12, 2014 0

Picking one book as a favorite is both lovely and confounding: as silly as they are, I love lists and rankings; at the same time I always wonder what my criteria for choosing is — favorite based on what? Let alone, what day is it, what time, and would I pick the same in the afternoon?

coverTop of my list for last year were Daniel Alarcón’s At Night We Walk in Circles, Claire Vaye Watkins’s Battleborn, Cynthia Bond’s Ruby, Terrence Holt’s Internal Medicine — all incredible. My favorite at this exact instant, though is The Collected Poems of Zibgniew Herbert because, simply put, I think it just might be the best book I have read in — oh, I don’t know, maybe ever.

Instead of explaining why, I’ll just give you a sample from his poem ‘A Small Heart:’

so now I sit in solitude
on a sawed-off tree trunk
in the exact center point
of the forgotten battle
gray spider I spin
bitter meditations

on memory too large
and a heart too small

More from A Year in Reading 2014

Don’t miss: A Year in Reading 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005

The good stuff: The Millions’ Notable articles

The motherlode: The Millions’ Books and Reviews

Like what you see? Learn about 5 insanely easy ways to Support The Millions, and follow The Millions on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr.

The Millions' future depends on your support. Become a member today!

Share this article

More from the Millions

Post a Response

Comments with unrelated links will be deleted. If you'd like to reach our readers, consider buying an advertisement instead.

Anonymous and pseudonymous comments that do not add to the conversation will be deleted at our discretion.

NEW COMMENTING RULE: Comments may be held for moderation and/or deleted. Whitelisted commenters will see their comments appear immediately. Don't be a jerk. We reserve the right to delete your comment or revoke commenting privileges for any reason we want.