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Paperback Saved by a Poem: The Transformative Power of Words [With CD (Audio)] Book

ISBN: 1401921469

ISBN13: 9781401921460

Saved by a Poem: The Transformative Power of Words [With CD (Audio)]

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Very Good*

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Book Overview

Can someone really be saved by a poem? In Kim Rosen's book, the answer is a resounding "Yes!" Poetry, the most ancient form of prayer, is a necessary medicine for our times: a companion through difficulty; a guide when we are lost; a salve when we are wounded; and a conduit to an inner source of joy, freedom, and insight. Whether you are a lover of poetry or have yet to discover its power, Rosen offers a new way to experience a poem. She encourages...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings


Kim Rosen's book was truly transformative. For people who are just beginning to work with poems, either writing them or reading them, this book is a must read. It is not a book on crafting poems, but the reader will learn about as much in that area as in a book that deals with craft. The reader will mostly learn about the critical importance of reading poetry out loud. The "cure" is in reading out loud and Ms. Rosen gives very clear insight into the research behind the findings about reading aloud. Reading this book has given this reader new motivation into editing and revising her own poetry to go along with some of the suggestions from Ms. Rosen. My poetry may have been saved by this book. Kudos to Kim Rosen.

The Power of Words Spoken by Heart

Kim Rosen is a poet. She connects with poetry by speaking poems aloud and learning them by heart. She asserts that learning poems by heart changes you biologically--with the poem's rhythm and breath. Rosen states "Dare to not understand, to lose your grip on making sense of the words. Let the images, like musical notes, pour over you." Rosen's book merges "the power of the word with the language of the soul." She describes "soul" as the word "to stand for all that lives in us beyond the socialized, survival-oriented self. I ask it to include the many realms of the 'inner' world: the psychological self with its memories, wounds, imagining, and feeling; the oceanic movements of the emotions; the archetypal themes, forces, and elements of the collective unconscious that we share with all humanity; and the Self that is pure, formless, awake, eternal presence." In Saved by a Poem, Rosen writes of "learning by heart" as "a partnership, not a conquest" as it is about "entering into a relationship with a poem." She approaches memory through what she calls "the Four Chambers of Memory," each chamber requiring a deeper commitment. You can look at a poem and say the lines while you're stopped in traffic, as you're falling asleep or before getting out of bed, or remember lines of it as you're taking a walk in nature. "The most important practice for rooting your poem in the Third Chamber is speaking it to other people," Rosen says. Rosen describes the Fourth Chamber as when "the poem starts singing to you." At this point, you have been transformed by the poem and can share it with others. Rosen deals with forgetting too; she calls it "the gift of forgetting." There's a shyness, a vulnerability, a silence, an undefended exposure (if this happens in public), all of which become the gifts in those moments of communion and truth. Each chapter offers Rosen's personal story and her relationship to poetry learned by heart and includes the medicine of poetry, choosing a poem, the anatomy of a poem, and the undressing your voice. In most cases the poems chosen by Rosen reflect the themes of the chapters. At the end of the book, Rosen shares several practices help to deepen a reader's poetry experiences. She also includes a list of her fifty favorite poems so you can get started learning poems by heart. Rosen brings her training, many gifts and a unique approach to her soulful work. Saved by a Poem brings poetry into our everyday experience, offering another way to connect to one another. Perhaps the greatest gifts of developing a relationship with a poem are to hear your own voice, to connect to a poem, and, as Rosen expresses, "allowing the poem to carry you into yourself, evoking feelings, reflections, and new experiences of the world." The book comes with a CD of poems that are recited by well-known spiritual teachers; among them are Cheryl Richardson, Dr. Christiane Northrup, Geneen Roth, Joan Borysenko and Andrew Harvey. They also share what the particular

What A Gift!

I had the pleasure of seeing Kim Rosen in person when she told her personal story and read one of her favorite poems to music. I really can't describe how moving the event was for me and, if you can't attend one of her local events, the CD that comes with this book has a similar impact. I have never heard the reading of poetry set to background music - what a delicious experience! The book is written beautifully, and the reader wants to savor each sentence with its nuance of meaning and artful creation. The experience of reading the book is very similar to the magic that happens when one reads their favorite poetry - which is, of course, what this book is all about. We deeply need the transforming magic that this book provides as we read Kim's story and how spoken words, through reading poetry outloud, is transformative in many communities and homes thoughout the world. I have been deeply touched by her work and invite you to do the same. It is intensely nourishing to the soul and is a welcome tonic in the face of one's daily challenges.

Saved by a Poem, you really should read this book!

This book should be required reading in high schools or colleges before the classics are forced down our throats. It really opens up your mind to understand the power of poetry to heal and transform your mind and your life. Kim writes from a deep place of knowing after having lived and learned the lessons she is imparting in the book. While reading it, I was inspired to start memorizing poems that touched me, and finding more of them. What totally surprised me was how easy it was to memorize them after taking Kim's advice to heart. I had always felt that I was no good at memorizing anything. I even bought a huge book of poems that came with 3 cd's of poets reading their own work; it really is so much easier to get the magic of poetry when you hear it spoken. "Saved by a Poem" has helped to start a new cycle of transformation in my life; it has opened me up to looking at things from new and exciting angles. Thank you Kim!

Saved by a poem? Yes, it's possible!

Kim Rosen suggests that poems are prayers--of joy, pain, love, wonder, wisdom--and to recite a poem from memory is food for the spirit. I bought the book last week and have begun to take poems to heart by memory and it has been, truly, a transformative experience. Kim suggests that a poem that speaks to you, when taken to heart, will continue to reveal truths over time...and my short experience with this process makes me realize I might have healed more quickly in difficult times if I had opened myself up to poetry in the past. Too often I have felt I couldn't relate to poetry and Kim's reflections make me wonder whether I erred on the side of analytical interpretation rather than acceptance--certainly hearing a poem spoken out loud makes a huge difference. She shares her own personal stories of how poems have shaped her life, provided insight at crucial moments, and turned her from deep depression. A whole chapter on practices on how to take a poem to heart is helpful. The CD is a gift beyond words--poems spoken by poets who then share what the poem means to them, with the lovely music of Jamie Sieber's cello in the background. I recommend this book wholeheartedly with great joy...and hope to gather a circle of friends to share poems with each other--to celebrate, to ponder, to connect closer to each other--we are even considering a conference via Skype from around the world. What a wonderful gift for yourself or a friend.
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