Name: Edith Grossman, translator/introducer of The Solitudes
Favorite Penguin Classic: Selected Poems, Thomas Hardy
Why I love this book: We know and relish the novels of Thomas Hardy, but coming across his powerful, breathtaking poetry still counts as a surprise to many of us. Like Yeats, Hardy explored the quintessential poetry of the English language: the dynamic rhythm created by lines composed almost entirely of monosyllables.
What should I read next? After Hardy, you should read the poems of Gerard Manley Hopkins. He wrote exquisite, heart-wrenching verse that pushed against the confines of traditional meters and rhythms; some of his lines will stay with you forever.