James Longenbach’s most recent books are the poetry collection The Iron Key (Norton) and, in prose, The Virtues of Poetry (Graywolf).
In his music and his prose, Virgil Thomson perfected a whimsically deadpan sensibility.
Censors thought it dirty and rebellious, but what makes Ulysses radical is its dramatization of the unending conflict between good and evil.
The process of discovery, not their profundities as such, is what makes Lawrence’s poems so gripping.
A new biography of John Keats is no match for Keats’s poetic inventions.
Geoffrey Brock’s anthology of twentieth-century Italian poetry offers the risk of a counter-eloquence.
A new biography shortchanges the poetic achievement of William Carlos Williams.
Two volumes of T.S. Eliot's letters elucidate how the momentous achievements of his art were determined by moments of awful daring.
Perfection of the life or of the work? The correspondence between W.B. Yeats and his wife George shows the complexities of art and life entwined.