THEIR ANCIENT GLITTERING EYES by Donald Hall

THEIR ANCIENT GLITTERING EYES

Remembering Poets and More Poets
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KIRKUS REVIEW

 Hall (Here at Eagle Pond, 1990, etc.) has updated his 1977 book of literary gossip--memories, anecdotes, psychoanalytic clues- -beyond the original quartet of subjects: Dylan Thomas, Frost, Eliot, and Pound. He's now included Yvor Winters, Marianne Moore, and Archibald MacLeish as well. (There are two Moore-Hall interviews included too.) Though it is the aged poet whom Hall- -himself aging, no longer the young ancillary and apparatchik--now finds himself most interested in, the memories here are still angled upward: Hall the student or eager interlocutor of the renowned. The MacLeish/Winters chapter is especially forthright in its admission of Hall's hunger for models, no matter the age or station: ``Wanting to be as generous or affable as MacLeish yet wanting to be as rigorous as Winters, I totter from one example to the other, in temperament closer to MacLeish and in aspiration to Winters.'' The Marianne Moore piece is milkier--Moore's fastidious mystery harder to subsume personally. The additions here, then, hardly transfigure (or even much enlarge) the earlier edition--but many of the stories, especially the Pound and Eliot ones, remain honeys.

Pub Date: Aug. 19th, 1992
ISBN: 0-89919-979-8
Page count: 320pp
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1st, 1992




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