Date of Award
Senior Scholars Paper (Open Access)
Colby College. English Dept.
The thirty poems collected here were written durin 1972-197. They begin as rather imagistic pieces, but the imagist tendencies are tempered with a preoccupation with the process of emotion. The poems progress through a middle period of finding a poetic voice by combining elements of other styles with the stylistic tendencies that rise out of myself. The subject matter is deliberately varied. The poems emerge, in the last few pieces, as the beginnings of a voice which combines a preoccupation with man in the unity of the world, the state of natural world and the nature of its retaliation for what has been done to it, and an interest in the mythologies of earlier cultures. The essay sketches the outline of a view of the poet's place in society, now and in the future. It shows some of the tendencies of earlier poetry which have been and are currently exercising influence on truly contemporary poets. The essay deals with Charles Olson's influence on the present state of the poetry and with projections of what will occur in poetry in the next ten years due to his and others' influence. It depicits a braodening of the poet's subject matter to include all of the natural world and all of the human cultures at all times and in all places. In addition, the essay explores the current flourishing of the study of mythology and its uses in poetry. Bly's theory of "leaping poetry" is explored as a tendency of the contemporary poet to immerse himself in the flow of his imagination. The essay ends with a projection of all these tendencies into a view of the poet as the intermediary between the people of a society and the leaders of that society.
Poetry, Modern, 20th century -- History and criticism, American poetry -- 20th century -- History and criticism, College verse, American, Maine, Waterville, Colby College
Recommended CitationCass, Richard, "Eyes on the branches: poems, and an essay on contemporary poetry" (1973). Senior Scholar Papers. Paper 44.
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