Miss Sarton is a middle-aged female poet who has published novels and six volumes of poetry. Her protagonist, in this ""tale,"" is F. Hilary Stevens, an elderly female poet, who has published novels and nine volumes of poetry. Hilary is vaguely worried about a homosexual college student, who looks up to her, but she is too busy for him on this day: two interviewers are visiting her. The interview lets her ramble, throughout the book, about Art, Poetry, and her Lesbian affairs in a tone that is adolescent, self-admiring and full of adroit self-justifications (that such ""love"" is necessary to her art). Colette, to whom Hilary apparently compares herself, might have written a neat, ironic tale about this theme; in Miss Sarton's hands, it is often simply embarrassing.