Philip Schultz (Author)

Overview | Formats

"Philip Schultz’s poems have long since earned their own place in American poetry. His stylistic trademarks are his great emotional directness and his intelligent haranguing—of god, the reader, and himself. He is one of the least affected of American poets, and one of the fiercest." —Tony Hoagland

In this compassionate new collection, Philip Schultz’s wry and incisive poetic voice takes on both the eternal questions of meaning and happiness and essentially modern complexities—the collective power of women’s marches, the strangeness of googling oneself, the refugee crisis, the emotions associated with visiting the 9/11 memorial. At once philosophical and droll, Schultz explores life’s luxuries and challenges with masterly precision.

Luxury takes its name from the center poem, which has an ironic ring next to Schultz’s Pulitzer Prize–winning collection Failure. The poem is a beautiful exploration of the pull toward life as Schultz examines the question of suicide, intimately probing a familial pull toward that darkness and weaving in the philosophy of Albert Camus and the voices and legacies of Paul Celan and Ernest Hemingway. Using humor, irony, and celebration as ballast against the book’s darker forces, Luxury explores the comfort and sustenance of life, the bittersweet clarity of aging, and the anxiety of existence.

From "Greed":

Happiness, I used to think,
was a necessary illusion.
Now I think it’s just
precious moments of relief

Book Details

  • Hardcover
  • January 2018
  • ISBN 978-0-393-63468-6
  • 5.9 × 8.6 in / 96 pages
  • Sales Territory: Worldwide

Other Formats

  1. Book CoverLuxury: Poems


Endorsements & Reviews

Luxury, Philip Schultz’s luminous new book, is the most powerful yet from a poet whose work of four decades has stood among the finest in our time. Schultz hears music even in despair, and finds immense wonder in the everyday…In the title poem, Schultz descends into darkness in order to imagine the luxury of existence. This book is essential because it can save our lives.” — Grace Schulman

“His new book Luxury answers the plea from Philip Schultz’s mother that he remember 'everything he lives for.' It’s an appraisal that keeps him in mind of how his father had at last tired of 'suffering the illusion of success.' Wrought in humility, Schultz’s book creates an 'industry of observation,' the affordances of which make for something very large.” — James McMichael

“In Philip Schultz’s new collection, Luxury, a mature sense of selfhood rooted in compassion rises through a finely tuned daring…Each poem is alive with tension, as it accrues, and the reader feels the lived knowing as it takes shape. A bold pleasure lurks in this book…Empathy resides at the nexus of Luxury. This poetry is not written to impress but to be shared—perfect for human consumption. Again and again, Philip Schultz surprises us.” — Yusef Komunyakaa

Also by Philip Schultz All

  1. Book CoverMy Dyslexia


  2. Book CoverThe Wherewithal: A Novel in Verse


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