Cover image for Parables and portraits
Parables and portraits
Mitchell, Stephen, 1943-
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York, N.Y. : Harper & Row, [1990]

Physical Description:
87 pages ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PS3563.I8239 P3 1990 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order


Author Notes

Poet and writer Stephen Mitchell attended Amherst College, the Sorbonne, and Yale University.

He has been training in Zen mediation for more than 25 years.

His book, Real Power, uses ancient wisdom to study power, the key to business. Mitchell also translated the Tao Te Ching.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 1

Booklist Review

In an age when too many so-called poets can barely shape a poor sentence let alone a poem, one must approach a first collection with suspicion. On first reading, however, these poems by scholar and translator Mitchell make it difficult to be wary: the metaphors and themes are rich, the poems are blessedly free of self-preoccupation, and you think: "Yes, there is something here! Something to open one's eyes!" In "The Annunication," for example, the angel looks at the woman and is himself caught in such an intense moment of revelation he supresses the memory of his message. In "Brief Theodicy" we are asked to contemplate the god of lemons, who is "bright, slow-moving, and thorough. He delights in the primary, the elliptical. He is not overly concerned with sweetness." Yet on second reading one wonders if these big themes are not held too lightly, as if the opposites of the world did not fragment, tear, and obliterate with their enigmas. You might then remember Mitchell's light, gentle translation of the Tao Te Ching and wonder, Is our generation destined to wear the great truths of the past as easily as if they were designed for summer clothing? --Stuart Whitwell