Thursday, November 4, 2010

Chacun à son goût (20th Century Poetry edition)

T.S. Eliot and the Demise of the Literary Culture:
Wallace Stevens’s poetry is more beautiful, and Robert Frost’s often more powerful, than Eliot’s, but the latter’s, once read, refuses to leave the mind. How much does memorability matter in literature? A vast deal, I suspect, and in poetry above all. And here, in the realm of the memorable, Eliot has left a greater literary residue than any other poet of the 20th century.
You're welcome to Eliot. To the extent I care for poetry -- admittedly less than is probably warranted -- I'd take Stevens over Eliot every time.
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