Hot Best Seller

Goldenrod: Poems

Availability: Ready to download

From the award-winning poet and bestselling author of Keep Moving and Good Bones, a stunning poetry collection that celebrates the beauty and messiness of life. With her breakout bestseller Keep Moving, Maggie Smith captured the nation with her “meditations on kindness and hope” (NPR). Now, with Goldenrod, the award-winning poet returns with a powerful collection of poems t From the award-winning poet and bestselling author of Keep Moving and Good Bones, a stunning poetry collection that celebrates the beauty and messiness of life. With her breakout bestseller Keep Moving, Maggie Smith captured the nation with her “meditations on kindness and hope” (NPR). Now, with Goldenrod, the award-winning poet returns with a powerful collection of poems that look at parenthood, solitude, love, and memory. Pulling objects from everyday life—a hallway mirror, a rock found in her son’s pocket, a field of goldenrods at the side of the road—she reveals the magic of the present moment. Only Maggie Smith could turn an autocorrect mistake into a line of poetry, musing that her phone “doesn’t observe / the high holidays, autocorrecting / shana tova to shaman tobacco, / Rosh Hashanah to rose has hands.”​


Compare

From the award-winning poet and bestselling author of Keep Moving and Good Bones, a stunning poetry collection that celebrates the beauty and messiness of life. With her breakout bestseller Keep Moving, Maggie Smith captured the nation with her “meditations on kindness and hope” (NPR). Now, with Goldenrod, the award-winning poet returns with a powerful collection of poems t From the award-winning poet and bestselling author of Keep Moving and Good Bones, a stunning poetry collection that celebrates the beauty and messiness of life. With her breakout bestseller Keep Moving, Maggie Smith captured the nation with her “meditations on kindness and hope” (NPR). Now, with Goldenrod, the award-winning poet returns with a powerful collection of poems that look at parenthood, solitude, love, and memory. Pulling objects from everyday life—a hallway mirror, a rock found in her son’s pocket, a field of goldenrods at the side of the road—she reveals the magic of the present moment. Only Maggie Smith could turn an autocorrect mistake into a line of poetry, musing that her phone “doesn’t observe / the high holidays, autocorrecting / shana tova to shaman tobacco, / Rosh Hashanah to rose has hands.”​

30 review for Goldenrod: Poems

  1. 4 out of 5

    Roxane

    A solid collection. There is a real subtlety in many of the poems that elevated the work.

  2. 5 out of 5

    s.penkevich

    ‘What is home,’ Maggie Smith writes, ‘but a passage I’m writing & underlining every time I read it.’ The proximity of home to poetry is deeply felt, particularly as it is so easy to find yourself at home within the emotions blossoming from each page. Goldenrod, Smith’s new collection following her viral success of Good Bones, is a dazzling love letter to a damaged world that sweetly illuminates the notion that we can find beauty even in darkness. She looks at the way poetry can grow out of anyth ‘What is home,’ Maggie Smith writes, ‘but a passage I’m writing & underlining every time I read it.’ The proximity of home to poetry is deeply felt, particularly as it is so easy to find yourself at home within the emotions blossoming from each page. Goldenrod, Smith’s new collection following her viral success of Good Bones, is a dazzling love letter to a damaged world that sweetly illuminates the notion that we can find beauty even in darkness. She looks at the way poetry can grow out of anything, with moving poems about growth after divorce or, the way an autocorrect change can uncover poetry in its alterations, even teasing with a title like ‘Not Everything Is a Poem’ where she finds she sees poetry everywhere in her children, such as the collection of items pulled from her son’s pockets forming a list poem tenderly capturing his essence. This is a book that will break your heart, make you stare into the depravity of the violence at the hands of the State against others, examine hardships and heartaches, but then piece you back together stronger, wiser and more full of love than ever before. This collection is so endlessly quotable, making it perfect to flip through when in need of inspiration. How can you not fall in love with a passage such as this: ‘I've talked so much about loving the world--- is this how it's done? I am offering the only thing I have. I am holding out my hand, feeding myself to the hungry future.’ There is something for everyone in here and this collection feels like an embrace of your entire being, listening to and sharing your fears but making you feel safe all the while. It feels very timely, with many poems criticizing the former failed president and references to the current pandemic that reminds everyone that this world is a lot right now. ‘Why don’t we leave / the flags at half-staff / & save ourselves / the trouble?’ she asks (the choice of having ‘& save ourselves’ alone on the line is brilliant and ominous) and while these poems don’t always have answers to the big questions, it shows that admitting you don’t know is okay and that hopefully we can all find a way together. ‘I tell myself it will do.’ ‘We say that’s not how The world works as if the world works.’ Smith stares the state of the US in the face and loudly calls out its atrocities in several poems. The evils of family separations and the internment camps that have plagued multiple presidencies particularly are targeted in several poems: ‘America, you’ve caged Even the babies. They cry mostly in Spanish… America, we have taken children From their mothers. We have separated Words from their meanings.’ In a poem that begins with a racist remark from a politician insulting other races as ‘animals’ she asks ‘do we know anymore what it is to be human? / I’ve stopped knowing what it is to be human.’ She finds she understands the instincts of animals and kinship with nature and in mocking the hateful words of others reminds us of the importance to care for nature as well as each other. The poems that address our bond with nature are certainly beautiful and meaningful enough to carry the torch in the absence of beloved poet Mary Oliver. ‘I was hoping the world would earn you.’ Simply put, this book is so goddamn beautiful you'll want to cry like looking at a newborn baby deer taking it's first steps. It is a collection full of wonder, wildness and sadness. It will hit you on almost every emotional string strung in your heart and you will be better for it. 4.5/5 ‘I pocket my left hand And tell myself a story about my life, A story I call “Talisman,” a story That might end well if I tell it right.’

  3. 5 out of 5

    Ken

    Not quite up to her earlier book Good Bones, but this collection shows some density in its own right. As you'd expect from Smith, you'll get some nature poems and some Mom poems, chiefly. Add to the mix in this outing, some political poems making statements about children especially -- she chooses the incidents of children being taken from their parents down on the border and the unforgivable looking the other way on Congress' part after Sandy Hook. Despite that heavy material, the poems themselv Not quite up to her earlier book Good Bones, but this collection shows some density in its own right. As you'd expect from Smith, you'll get some nature poems and some Mom poems, chiefly. Add to the mix in this outing, some political poems making statements about children especially -- she chooses the incidents of children being taken from their parents down on the border and the unforgivable looking the other way on Congress' part after Sandy Hook. Despite that heavy material, the poems themselves are light on the eyes -- mostly short, both in duration and in words-per-line. For example, from wildness: Lacrimae Green dashes for grassland, brown dots for desert, solid blue for water— the children’s atlas is all simulacra, from the Latin for likeness, which always reminds me of lacrimae, Latin for tears. That’s the rickety bridge my brain makes over the river, or the kinked blue line that stands for it. What a landscape in the symbolic distance: dark green lollipops for deciduous forest, a cluster of black carats for mountains. Once, doing dishes, I overheard my children bickering about metaphysics in the next room. The three-year-old said, Everything is true, and his older sister countered, Do you mean real? When I think likeness, I think tears—blue always for water, blue running through and under everything.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Ani | AnnelieReads

    This was my introduction to Smith's poetry and it overall was, personally, not for me. I enjoyed a few of the poems but found many felt unfinished of half thought through. I see that many enjoy Smith's earlier work and I would be interested in trying it in the future. Thank you to the publisher for the e-ARC for review. This was my introduction to Smith's poetry and it overall was, personally, not for me. I enjoyed a few of the poems but found many felt unfinished of half thought through. I see that many enjoy Smith's earlier work and I would be interested in trying it in the future. Thank you to the publisher for the e-ARC for review.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Soula Kosti

    "I feel about birth the way I feel about death: it should not happen in a room like this, or any room. I want the smell of soil or salt air, dark pines, fire and hot stones. Something elemental. You should look up and see not ceiling, at least not first or last on this earth." 4.5 ✨ Deeply moving and personal, Maggie Smith's poetry collection Goldenrod is a must-read. In Goldenrod, Maggie Smith explores the world around her and reflects on her personal experiences in a raw and captivating way, covering i "I feel about birth the way I feel about death: it should not happen in a room like this, or any room. I want the smell of soil or salt air, dark pines, fire and hot stones. Something elemental. You should look up and see not ceiling, at least not first or last on this earth." 4.5 ✨ Deeply moving and personal, Maggie Smith's poetry collection Goldenrod is a must-read. In Goldenrod, Maggie Smith explores the world around her and reflects on her personal experiences in a raw and captivating way, covering in her poems topics like motherhood, divorce, politics, immigration, loneliness, nature, and loss. "Do we know anymore what it is to be human? I've stopped knowing what it is to be human." Here are some of my favorites poems (even though the list can go on and on): Animals, In the Grand Scheme of Things, Written Deer, Threshold, For My Next Trick, December 18, 2008, Ohio Cento, Half Staff, Wild, First Thaw, and A Room Like This.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kyra Leseberg (Roots & Reads)

    While I am a fan of poetry, so often I do not feel a personal connection, rather I appreciate the thoughtful reflections and clever wordplay. Maggie Smith's collection Good Bones is probably the first book of poems that I felt connected to; as if the words were inscribed on my own heart and I was just discovering them. I was thrilled to be offered an advance copy of the collection Goldenrod. While it pales in comparison to Good Bones for me personally, I still appreciated the quiet musings on lif While I am a fan of poetry, so often I do not feel a personal connection, rather I appreciate the thoughtful reflections and clever wordplay. Maggie Smith's collection Good Bones is probably the first book of poems that I felt connected to; as if the words were inscribed on my own heart and I was just discovering them. I was thrilled to be offered an advance copy of the collection Goldenrod. While it pales in comparison to Good Bones for me personally, I still appreciated the quiet musings on life: parenthood, nature, divorce, politics - it's all here, line by line, subtle but intense. A few lines that knocked me out: "What is home but a book we write, then read again & again, each time dog-earing different pages." * "I've talked so much about loving the world--- is this how it's done? I am offering the only thing I have. I am holding out my hand, feeding myself to the hungry future." Thanks to Atria for providing me with an ARC. Goldenrod: Poems is scheduled for release on July 27, 2021. For more reviews, visit www.rootsandreads.wordpress.com

  7. 5 out of 5

    Elena

    i think it should be illegal to mention a "retweet" in a book i think it should be illegal to mention a "retweet" in a book

  8. 4 out of 5

    Katharine

    These poems were absolutely beautiful. I dogeared almost every single one. Smith has a way with words that reminds me of a cross between Mary Oliver and Kate Baer. If you’re a fan of either I highly recommend this collection. (And if you haven’t read her poem called Good Bones, look it up and read it now. I’ll wait.) Thank you to Atria for providing me with a free review copy. All opinions are my own.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    Grateful to have the chance to read this early care of an e-galley from the publisher. I've been looking forward to this collection for a while! Grateful to have the chance to read this early care of an e-galley from the publisher. I've been looking forward to this collection for a while!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Annissa Joy Armstrong

    Loved this collection of poems!!! If you are an audio fan, the author narrates the audiobook and it is awesome!!!!

  11. 4 out of 5

    Cook Memorial Public Library

    Recommended by Andrea. Check our catalog: https://encore.cooklib.org/iii/encore... Recommended by Andrea. Check our catalog: https://encore.cooklib.org/iii/encore...

  12. 4 out of 5

    Ben Platt

    A collection in search of stability and truth, and that seems to paradoxically find it in some of the small things left unknown. The searching, and this paradox, tend to be more compelling than the truths that Smith finds though. There is an unevenness between poems in this collection- some poems are stellar, and Smith's verse always renders sharp images with scant words, but not every poem lands with the same emotional or linguistic impact. A collection in search of stability and truth, and that seems to paradoxically find it in some of the small things left unknown. The searching, and this paradox, tend to be more compelling than the truths that Smith finds though. There is an unevenness between poems in this collection- some poems are stellar, and Smith's verse always renders sharp images with scant words, but not every poem lands with the same emotional or linguistic impact.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    I got this book through a Goodreads Giveaway. I don't read a lot of poetry, but there were quite a few in here that grabbed my attention. I think Prove was my favorite, as a creative person married to a chef, the concept felt widely applicable and gave shape to a feeling I have often. I did also like the way the collection still told a narrative like a novel, through poem titles and context. Also I'm not sure if the purpose of an advanced reader copy is to provide feedback, but there were two poe I got this book through a Goodreads Giveaway. I don't read a lot of poetry, but there were quite a few in here that grabbed my attention. I think Prove was my favorite, as a creative person married to a chef, the concept felt widely applicable and gave shape to a feeling I have often. I did also like the way the collection still told a narrative like a novel, through poem titles and context. Also I'm not sure if the purpose of an advanced reader copy is to provide feedback, but there were two poems named Ohio Cento, but it sounded like that was the title for the second one. Also, the table of contents was still all 0s which as a graphic designer I've forgotten to update until someone else noticed!

  14. 4 out of 5

    Carol Custer

    Smith expresses her feelings well but I didn't feel a connection to any of the poems. I actually found them rather depressing and with too much of a political slant to be enjoyable. Smith expresses her feelings well but I didn't feel a connection to any of the poems. I actually found them rather depressing and with too much of a political slant to be enjoyable.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Emma Bechill

    Most of these poems didn’t really do anything for me, but there were about 8 or so that really touched me. A few spoke about family separation on the border, one other referred to a school shooting, another was a critique of America, and a final one spoke about loneliness during the pandemic. The others were written with beautiful imagery but were a bit more abstract and less meaningful to me personally.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Violeta

    Good Bones is one of my all-time favorite poetry collections, and I wasn’t sure if Goldenrod would live up to it. Though it doesn’t top Good Bones, Goldenrod sits so well beside it; they accompany and deepen each other like sister albums. Maggie Smith has such an ability to mine the everyday, witness the current sociopolitical moment, and distill and wrestle with the existential questions of our time...all while never abandoning her reader to hopelessness. Her poems are accessible and resounding; Good Bones is one of my all-time favorite poetry collections, and I wasn’t sure if Goldenrod would live up to it. Though it doesn’t top Good Bones, Goldenrod sits so well beside it; they accompany and deepen each other like sister albums. Maggie Smith has such an ability to mine the everyday, witness the current sociopolitical moment, and distill and wrestle with the existential questions of our time...all while never abandoning her reader to hopelessness. Her poems are accessible and resounding; they offer their reader company and, ultimately, hope. I dog-eared SO many pages, but my top ten favorite poems were: “The Hum” “Written Deer” “At the End of Our Marriage, in the Backyard” “Slipper” “Half-Staff” “Planetarium in January” “Poem Beginning with a Line from Bashō” “A Room Like This” “Talisman” “Verse Chorus Verse Chorus Bridge” Disclaimer: I received an arc from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Erin

    2.5/31 Oops. I like to read books I have not already read for this challenge. So since I reread Ciaran Carson's "Irish for No," I then picked up this little collection that landed just in time for the Sealey Challenge. Glad I did. Maggie Smith is hot tea. She is comforting and direct and warm and (for me) necessary. And while she may be crying into a hand towel (or at least the speaker of one of her poems is), letting the backyard go to seed as her marriage ends, lamenting Trump and children bein 2.5/31 Oops. I like to read books I have not already read for this challenge. So since I reread Ciaran Carson's "Irish for No," I then picked up this little collection that landed just in time for the Sealey Challenge. Glad I did. Maggie Smith is hot tea. She is comforting and direct and warm and (for me) necessary. And while she may be crying into a hand towel (or at least the speaker of one of her poems is), letting the backyard go to seed as her marriage ends, lamenting Trump and children being caged at the border, living through Covid, she is always reminding us to name the world, even if the name we give it is only for ourselves and not the world. Name it. Name it Goldenrod. Even if that is not its name. #SealeyChallenge #MaggieSmith From “Goldenrod” “Dear flowers born with a highway view, forgive me if I've mistaken you. Goldenrod, whatever your name is, you are with your own kind. Look—the meadow is a mirror, full of you, your reflection repeating. Whatever you are, I see you, wild yellow, and I would let you name me.”

  18. 4 out of 5

    Molly

    really enjoyed maggie smith's new poetry collection! she speaks to motherhood, aging, loss, grief, the end of marriage, and living in america in our current political moment. i think my favorite poem in the collection might have to be "For My Next Trick," in which she navigates trying to explain birth and death to her young daughter - where we are before life and where we go after. deeply moving and heartfelt and honest, smith's poems in this collection get to the plain center of things in such really enjoyed maggie smith's new poetry collection! she speaks to motherhood, aging, loss, grief, the end of marriage, and living in america in our current political moment. i think my favorite poem in the collection might have to be "For My Next Trick," in which she navigates trying to explain birth and death to her young daughter - where we are before life and where we go after. deeply moving and heartfelt and honest, smith's poems in this collection get to the plain center of things in such a beautiful way. some favorite lines: (view spoiler)[ "We say in the grand scheme of things / as if there were one. We say that's not how // the world works as if the world works." ("In the Grand Scheme of Things") "the children's atlas is all simulacrua, / from the Latin for likeness, which always // reminds me of lacrimae, Latin for tears." & "blue always for water, blue / running through and under everything." ("Lacrimae") "What is home but a book we write, then / read again & again, each time dog-earring // different pages." ("Written Deer") "Imagine if I could / wear my home and call it my body, / wear my body and call it my home." ("Slipper") "I'm thinking I don't want to die / in a room. It is like my life, / this poem. All this time, / child, I've had no idea / where it's going." ("A Room Like This") (hide spoiler)]

  19. 4 out of 5

    Molly

    Prefacing this short review by saying I've read very few poetry collections. so I don't have much to compare to. What I can say is Goldenrod, for me, was an insightful and thought provoking collection about life and death, motherhood, 21st century America, and nature, and it felt like a good introduction to the genre. I was able to read these poems in two short sittings, but there are a few I highlighted that I know I'll return to. I was gifted a complimentary e-Arc after reading (and enjoying!) Prefacing this short review by saying I've read very few poetry collections. so I don't have much to compare to. What I can say is Goldenrod, for me, was an insightful and thought provoking collection about life and death, motherhood, 21st century America, and nature, and it felt like a good introduction to the genre. I was able to read these poems in two short sittings, but there are a few I highlighted that I know I'll return to. I was gifted a complimentary e-Arc after reading (and enjoying!) Maggie Smith's Keep Moving. I think I'll read anything Maggie Smith writes going forward. Thank you Simon & Schuster!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Bonny

    I didn't think that Maggie Smith could meet or exceed Good Bones in terms of good poetry, but she does just that with Goldenrod. Smith writes about everyday life — parenthood, solitude, love, and loss, in ways that show us the beauty of our everyday lives. She writes about fields of goldenrod, a rock from her son's pocket, and even an autocorrect mistake. We've all experienced these things but Maggie Smith will help you to appreciate them. Don't miss this stellar volume of poetry. Thank you to At I didn't think that Maggie Smith could meet or exceed Good Bones in terms of good poetry, but she does just that with Goldenrod. Smith writes about everyday life — parenthood, solitude, love, and loss, in ways that show us the beauty of our everyday lives. She writes about fields of goldenrod, a rock from her son's pocket, and even an autocorrect mistake. We've all experienced these things but Maggie Smith will help you to appreciate them. Don't miss this stellar volume of poetry. Thank you to Atria Books and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of the book.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jenny

    In this collection of poetry, Maggie Smith covers many everyday topics – parenthood, love, loss, divorce, family, solitude, and nature. This was a solid collection of poetry, although some of the works tugged at my heartstrings more than others. A beautiful follow-up to Keep Moving, a lot of people will connect with the topics Smith writes about. A thought-provoking and powerful read that will bring out emotion in even the hardest of hearts. 3.75 stars. I received a free digital ARC from NetGalle In this collection of poetry, Maggie Smith covers many everyday topics – parenthood, love, loss, divorce, family, solitude, and nature. This was a solid collection of poetry, although some of the works tugged at my heartstrings more than others. A beautiful follow-up to Keep Moving, a lot of people will connect with the topics Smith writes about. A thought-provoking and powerful read that will bring out emotion in even the hardest of hearts. 3.75 stars. I received a free digital ARC from NetGalley and Atria Books in exchange for an honest review.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Joy Johnston

    While I wasn't a fan of Keep Moving, I love this new collection of poetry by Maggie Smith. The poems resonate with me on a personal level, but I also think they are just darn good poems. I appreciate how she incorporates nature and her children's observations of the world into her work but in a way that is fresh and profound. At times gutting and hopeful, it is a collection that captures these unsettling times with depth and poignancy. While I wasn't a fan of Keep Moving, I love this new collection of poetry by Maggie Smith. The poems resonate with me on a personal level, but I also think they are just darn good poems. I appreciate how she incorporates nature and her children's observations of the world into her work but in a way that is fresh and profound. At times gutting and hopeful, it is a collection that captures these unsettling times with depth and poignancy.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Peycho Kanev

    What Else The smallest urn I’ve seen was the size of my fist. The smallest coffin held a two-year-old girl and her love-worn Winnie-the-Pooh. I looked, kept looking, because how not to? I’ve forgotten how to lower my shoulders, how to draw clean, unbroken breaths from the deep well of my body, how to unclench my jaw or else keep cracking my teeth and tonguing the grit. The smallest graves I’d see with my eyes closed but I don’t close them. I’ve forgotten how. Sleep was a dress I wore threadbare as a child but What Else The smallest urn I’ve seen was the size of my fist. The smallest coffin held a two-year-old girl and her love-worn Winnie-the-Pooh. I looked, kept looking, because how not to? I’ve forgotten how to lower my shoulders, how to draw clean, unbroken breaths from the deep well of my body, how to unclench my jaw or else keep cracking my teeth and tonguing the grit. The smallest graves I’d see with my eyes closed but I don’t close them. I’ve forgotten how. Sleep was a dress I wore threadbare as a child but grew out of. If there is a God, is there such a thing as holy regret for what He’s made? What He’s—laissez-faire—allowed us to break? As if He’s turned His head, watching anything but the world. What else is there to watch, I want to ask.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Brian

    It’s August. I eat breakfast at the table, a new thing for me, and read Goldenrod. I eat lunch and I read Goldenrod. I post “Lacrimae” on Instagram and link to “During Lockdown, I Let the Dog Sleep in My Bed Again” on my blog. I underline the line about “the good dark,” among others. All this to say, I loved a lot.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Jacob

    So many trite observations, you’d think this was written by Jerry Seinfeld. Have you ever Wanted to hear A white person Tell you how racism Makes them sad :( When it’s not that, It’s small things, That were probably lifted from Twitter; Very relatable. The only reason I didn’t give this a one was because of the bone poem. The bone poem was good

  26. 4 out of 5

    Chelsea Bruning

    Oof. I knew this was going to be good, but I did not expect it to wreck me the way it did. Maggie Smith writes poetry from the heart, not with flourishes, but with raw emotion. She weaves a magical web around grief and injustice and parenting. As a mother in this country in this time, she vocalizes what so many of us feel. This is a collection that I will return to time and time again

  27. 4 out of 5

    Lily Y

    3.5 stars

  28. 4 out of 5

    Mary Lee

    4/31 #TheSealeyChallenge Something about hearing the poet read her own work (via Zoom, thank you Gramercy Bookstore) moves a collection from 4 to 5 stars.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Angela

    This spoke to me on a gut level.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Ariel | swirlofspice

    I so wish my library had Good Bones, so I could read it next!

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...