Author(s): Charles Simic
“Decades after immigrating to the States in 1954, [Simic] retains an outsider’s perspective: inquisitive, incredulous, amazed by the apparently ordinary—all excellent qualities for an essayist. There’s ample warmth and charm here.” —New York Times Book Review
In addition to being one of America’s most famous and commended poets, Charles Simic is a prolific and talented essayist. The Life of Images brings together his best prose written over twenty-five years.
A blend of the thoughtful, comic, and tragic, the essays in The Life of Images explore subjects ranging from poetry to philosophy, photography, politics, and art, to Simic’s childhood in a war-torn country. Culled from five collections, these works demonstrate the qualities that make Simic’s poetry so original yet accessible. Whether he is pondering the relationship between history and the individual, or recalling growing up in Belgrade and New York City, Simic shares his distinctive take on the world and offers an intimate look into the life and mind of an immigrant.
Charles Simic, poet, essayist, and translator, was born in Yugoslavia in 1938 and immigrated to the United States in 1954. Since 1967, he has published twenty books of his own poetry, in addition to a memoir; the essay collection The Life of Images; and numerous books of translations for which he has received many literary awards, including the Pulitzer Prize, the Griffin Prize, the MacArthur Fellowship, and the Wallace Stevens Award. Simic is a frequent contributor to The New York Review of Books and in 2007 was chosen as poet laureate of the United States. He is emeritus professor at the University of New Hampshire, where he has taught since 1973, and is distinguished visiting writer at New York University.