Kherdian’s 1990 Book of Poetry Makes a Comeback

The 25th Anniversary Edition of Kherdian's The Dividing River / The Meeting Shore
The 25th Anniversary Edition of Kherdian’s The Dividing River / The Meeting Shore

In December 1990, David Kherdian’s The Dividing River / The Meeting Shore was published by Santa Fe’s Lotus Press. Now, Beech Hill Publishing Company is releasing the 25th Anniversary Edition of this masterwork, with a new 36-page companion booklet of ephemera: a new foreword, a new interview with David Kherdian, and 7 previously unpublished poems that sprung from the same poetic wellspring as the original.

In the foreword, Mado Spiegler writes, “The Dividing River / The Meeting Shore is a complex work, a ‘metaphysical’ poem in 41 numbered ‘movements’; not a love song, though it is about the experience of love, nor a dirge, although it is about the experience of loss, but a multifaceted meditation, on the mystery of individual lives, and the mystery of friendship, especially the kind of fated friendships in which the lack of superficial ‘compatibility’ goes together with deep connection that lives on the long arc of destiny.”

In discussing his work in the interview included in the booklet, David Kherdian notes, “The reservoir these poems come from is very deep, and also distant in time, and of course I never before evaluated or brooded over the childhood friendship I had with my friend, because the chronological movement of our lives does not lend itself to backward glances, certainly not in a sustained, deliberate, and loving way. Loss does that, time does that, and one’s conscience slowly awakened over time does this as nothing else can.”

Reflecting on his friend’s passing, Kherdian adds, “When someone we love dies, something in us goes that way too, like a man standing on shore waving goodbye to a departing vessel. And, too, your friend takes with him what he knew and remembered of you, so that is also stripped away, and we are smaller for it. In the end we must remember ourselves, but all those who remember and knew us are involved in that remembering. These poems touch that eternal place in us, where the horizontal bar of life is intersected by a vertical light outside of time.”

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