Sunday, June 23, 2013


A most elegant book of poet-gossip, where the once chiefdom of poetry, Robert Lowell, is now seen (but not by Spivack) as less than what we thought he was, and the many poets: Spivack, Adrienne Rich, Anne Sexton, Elizabeth Bishop, bits of Denise Levertov, Gail Mazur, all Boston based at one time or another and were maybe too much under the spell of the Brahmin. Stanley Kunitz is kept to himself and nicely portrayed. Even a long forgotten and talented poet of age 19, Peter Kaplan, is remembered, after he jumps to his death off a Cape Cod bridge into the canal. Spivack has none of the once upon a time Adrienne Rich fierceness of demanding all men in any of her poetry reading audiences leave the premises before she reads. She writes a honorable memoir.


With Robert Lowell and his Circle
Kathleen Spivack
Northwestern University Press