Tuesday, March 26, 2013

News at Eleven: [Edward Thomas] was England's most discerning,

esteemed, and feared poetry critic--he very early grasped the brilliance and weaknesses in Yeats and Pound, and championed Robert Frost; Walter de la Mare said that he must have been "a critic of rhymes in his nursery." In reviews, articles, and book introductions on rural life, and particularly in his "country books"--eccentric, discursive amalgams of travel writing, history, topography, natural history, literary analysis, and fiction, rooted in particular counties or regions--Thomas established himself as among the best in a distinguished line of English writers on nature and the countryside.

Paradoxically, those pursuits added to the labors that kept him from the leisured life he perhaps needed in order to write poetry--a life he would only fully find in the army--even as they immeasurably helped him emerge as a poet.

from The Atlantic Monthly: Chapter and Verse: The Unknown Prose of a Great Poet


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