The five interviews in this book were conducted by students in â€śThe Art of Poetry,â€ť a course that Harry Thomas taught for several years. The studentsâ€™ depth of knowledge and keenness of insight into the poetsâ€™ work is an affirmation of American education. The poets respond to the students with a frankness and feeling of fraternity that mounts at times to a sort of communion.The poets take up a great range of matters in the interviews the nature of artistic creation, the varieties and difficulties of poetic translation, poetry and politics, religion, popular culture, the contemporary readership for poetry, and the experience of living as a poet in a country not your own. They speak with familiarity and enthusiasm of a number of writers, including Eliot, Joyce, Rilke, Brodsky, Pound, Ovid, Dante, Ralegh, Wordsworth, Keats, Mandelstam, and Wilde. One of the delights of reading these interviews is to observe the poets responding to the same matter for instance, Seamus Heaney speaking of Robert Pinskyâ€™s translation of Czeslaw Miloszâ€™s great poem, â€śThe World,â€ť and Robert Pinsky speaking at length of Seamus Heaneyâ€™s essay, in The Government of the Tongue, on Pinskyâ€™s translation. This is an intimate look into the minds of five of our most celebrated contemporary poets and an invigorating meditation on some of our most human concerns.
Literature & Fiction, World Literature, United States, History & Criticism,