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Download Essays after Eighty Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Essays after Eighty, by Donald Hall Click for printable size audiobook cover
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From a former Poet Laureate, a new collection of essays delivering a gloriously unexpected view from the vantage point of very old age.

Donald Hall has lived a remarkable life of letters, a career capped by a National Medal of the Arts, awarded by the president. Now, in the “unknown, unanticipated galaxy” of very old age, he is writing searching essays that startle, move, and delight.

Hall paints his past: “Decades followed each other—thirty was terrifying, forty I never noticed because I was drunk, fifty was best with a total change of life, sixty extended the bliss of fifty.” And, poignantly, often joyfully, he limns his present: “When I turned eighty and rubbed testosterone on my chest, my beard roared like a lion and gained four inches.” Most memorably, Hall writes about his enduring love affair with his ancestral Eagle Pond Farm and with the writing life that sustains him, every day.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “By exploring the joys and vicissitudes of a long life, this work offers revealing insights into the human condition.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “Many readers may find themselves hoping they’ll be this cogent and canny when they’re ‘after eighty.’”

    Booklist

  • “That sense of joy infuses these gentle essays.”

    Kirkus Reviews

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About the Author
Author Donald Hall

Donald Hall is an American author and literary critic. A graduate of Phillips Exeter Academy, Harvard, and Oxford, he is the author of over numerous books and collections of poetry, including Caldecott Medal winner Ox-Cart Man, White Apples and the Taste of Stone, and New Poets of England and America. He served as the 2006–2007 US Poet Laureate and has won numerous awards for his contributions to literature, including the 1990 Robert Frost Medal, the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize for his lifetime achievement, and the 2010 National Medal of Arts.