THE SHAPING SPIRIT by William Van O'Connor


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This study of the Irish poet, Wallace Stevens, affords a key to his obscure castle. And, perhaps surprisingly, when one has entered the marmoreal facade of his measured and classical rhythms (with the aid of Mr. O'Connor's illumination) one finds within more of the Dionysic force, more color, more belief in the imagination as the supreme shaper, than would have seemed possible. For Stevens admirers, this fine little book provides this key. It is interesting, provocative; it will stimulate rereading for those familiar with Stevens, and persuade others to venture into the field of a fine contemporary talent. The book is modestly written with no fanfare of intellectual subtleties; a first rate piece of literary interpretation, which ranks high in the none too crowded realm of criticism. An audience limited perhaps to poets and literary people. Among them it should receive appreciative attention.

Pub Date: April 1st, 1950
Publisher: Henry Regnery