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By Maureen N. McLane

A thrillingly unique exploration of a existence lived below poetry's uniquely seductive spell

"Oh! there are spirits of the air," wrote Percy Bysshe Shelley. during this stunningly unique ebook, Maureen N. McLane channels the spirits and voices that make up the track in a single poet's brain. Weaving feedback and memoir, My Poets explores a lifestyles examining and a lifestyles learn. McLane invokes now not inevitably the easiest poets, nor an important poets (whoever those could be), yet these writers who, in owning her, made her. "I am marking right here what so much marked me," she writes. starting from Chaucer to H.D. to William Carlos Williams to Louise Glück to Shelley (among others), McLane tracks the "growth of a poet's mind," as Wordsworth placed it in The Prelude. In poetical prose either probing and incantatory, McLane has written a thorough booklet of experimental feedback. Susan Sontag referred to as for an "erotics of interpretation": this can be it. half Bildung, half dithyramb, half exegesis, My Poets extends an implicit invitation to you, pricey reader, to think about who your "my poets," or "my novelists," or "my filmmakers," or "my pop stars," may be.

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Why do you write poetry? Because existence is willy-nilly thrust into our hands, our fate is to make something—if nothing else, the shape cut by the arc of our lives. Why do you write poetry? Odi et amo. Why do you write poetry? My purpose here is to advance into the sense of the weather. Why do you write poetry? I sing to use the Waiting. 2. MY CHAUCER / KANKEDORT I. M. JULIA BRIGGS Was Troilus nought in a kankedort? Chaucer, Troilus and Criseyde, II. 1752 Isolate, peculiar, rare, obsolete, it surfaces in the language only once, according to the latest edition of the Oxford English Dictionary: in Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde.

Cioa-coatl?? Where were we? Where were we going? On Day Two I was confronted with: It is 12:20 in New York a Friday three days after Bastille day, yes it is 1959 and I go get a shoeshine because I will get off the 4:19 in Easthampton at 7:15 and then go straight to dinner and I don’t know the people who will feed me (FRANK O’HARA, “THE DAY LADY DIED”) Among the things I didn’t know: • that trains run on daily schedules and may be referred to by their time of departure • who Lady Day was • who Billie Holiday was • who Bonnard was, who Mike was, what Strega was, who Mal Waldron was (all mentioned in the headlong rush of the poem) I had little idea what to do with Olson, even less (perhaps surprisingly) with O’Hara.

2. MY CHAUCER / KANKEDORT I. M. JULIA BRIGGS Was Troilus nought in a kankedort? Chaucer, Troilus and Criseyde, II. 1752 Isolate, peculiar, rare, obsolete, it surfaces in the language only once, according to the latest edition of the Oxford English Dictionary: in Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde. “Kankedort”: speculatively defined as a “difficult situation” by Larry D. ” A lonely word whose definition can be inferred only from its single, immediate context in Chaucer’s poem: Troilus awaits his beloved, Criseyde, who is being led by her uncle Pandarus to Troilus’s room for their first love-meeting.

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