Brick Books, 2005
In 45 "short talks," each a paragraph in length, Anne Carson covers a range of disparate subjects--the Mona Lisa, Ovid, Van Gogh, hedonism, hopes, trout--in a quirky, fascinating manner.
Here's "Short Talk on Van Gogh":
"The reason I drink is to understand the yellow sky the great yellow sky, said Van Gogh. When he looked at the world he saw the nails that attach colours to things and he saw that the nails were in pain."
And here's the "Short Talk on Le Bonheur D'Etre Bien Aimee":
"Day after day I think of you as soon as I wake up. Someone has put cries of birds on the air like jewels."
That last sentence is a beauty.
Make it new. That's what Carson does, and does well.