Saturday, May 30, 2009

Derek Walcott on Robert Frost

Pound's poetry does not absolve Pound, any more than a single phrase from a letter by Frost damns Frost forever. One groans or shudders, but one pushes on. Poetry is its own realm and does not pardon. There is nothing to forgive Frost's poetry for. There are, instead, many poems to be grateful for, so many poems, indeed, that the man, the biography, the symbol of Yankee resilience are all negligible, since poetry pronounces benediction not on the poet but on the reader. A great poem is a state of raceless, sexless, timeless grace, and this book, which contains more than just a life, is too full of such benedictions for this reader not to pick it up and continue. -- "The Road Taken"

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