Once: Poems by Alice Walker. New York. 1968. Harcourt Brace & World. 81 pages. hardcover. Jacket design by Robin Forbes.




ONCE is no ordinary book of poems. Alice Walker is only twenty-four years old, but she has had an eventful life. It embarrasses her to be called ‘active' in the civil-rights movement. ‘Like many, I am guilty of not being active enough,' she explains. Yet her essay on the impact of the Movement won first prize over several hundred competitors in a contest sponsored by The American Scholar, and she and her husband now live in Mississippi. He is a civil-rights attorney and she is at work on a novel. As might be expected, a large section of these poems deals with the civil-rights conflicts in the South. They are angry and vivid poems that give the reader an urgent sense of being on the scene, of seeing the faces and hearing the voices of those involved. Miss Walker has also lived with the Bugandans and the Kikuyus in Uganda and Kenya, East Africa, and another large portion of the book contains poems that have come out of that experience. They are very different: full of grace and wit and yet have a strangely primitive force that at dines reminds one of paintings by Henri Rousseau. Alice Walker is an original, one to be watched for her poetry and fiction. Best of all, there is a deep humanity to her work that insures its lastingness.



Walker AliceAUTHOR BIOGRAPHY - Alice Malsenior Walker (born February 9, 1944) is an American author and activist. She wrote the critically acclaimed novel The Color Purple (1982) for which she won the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.She also wrote Meridian and The Third Life of Grange Copeland among other works.













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