I first encountered Berry’s poetry as an epigraph in Cornelia Funke’s Inkheart
series and was captivated by “The Peace of Wild Things.” Intrigued, I bought a volume of his verse and was not disappointed.
He sets the tone of the collection with the bucolic “The Apple Trees.” Throughout this poem and the rest of the book, he weaves the threads of his writing into lush tapestries that delight the mind’s eye.
In reading his poetry, I was struck once again by the thought that language is one of the true enchantments of this world, able through the simple means of symbols on paper to conjure a universe of images or invoke an emotive response.
Although not every offering in The Selected Poems of Wendell Berry
attains the same level of beautiful imagery that “The Peace of Wild Things” did, as a whole the author achieves his goal of providing a representation of his work. From the starkness of war to the joy and sorrows of love and loss, Berry proves that he is adept with the evocative phrase.