The Rain in Portugal—a title that admits he's not much of a rhymer—sheds Collins's ironic light on such subjects as travel and art, cats and dogs, loneliness and love, beauty and death. His tones range from the whimsical—"the dogs of Minneapolis . . . / have no idea they're in Minneapolis"—to the elegiac in a reaction to the death of Seamus Heaney. A student of the everyday, here Collins contemplates a weather vane, a still life painting, the calendar, and a child lost at a beach. His imaginative fabrications have Shakespeare flying comfortably in first class and Keith Richards supporting the globe on his head. By turns entertaining, engaging, and enlightening, The Rain in Portugal amounts to another chorus of poems from one of the most respected and familiar voices in the world of American poetry.
Praise for The Rain in Portugal
"Nothing in Billy Collins's twelfth book . . . is exactly what readers might expect, and that's the charm of this collection."—The Washington Post
"This new collection shows [Collins] at his finest. . . . Certain to please his large readership and a good place for readers new to Collins to begin."—Library Journal
"Disarmingly playful and wistfully candid."—Booklist