February 11, 2020

Themes of Poetry: Last Looks

Helen Vendler Lectures on Poets: Stevens, Plath, Lowell, Bishop, and Merrill

From the A. W. Mellon Lectures in the Fine Arts at The National Gallery of Art, Helen Vendler, A. Kingsley Porter University Professor, Harvard University.
In this lecture series, Vendler "considers the final works of five modern American poets… as they examine life and death 'in a single steady gaze.'"

 Last Looks, Last Books: The Binocular Poetry of Death
Part 1: Introduction

Part 2: Wallace Stevens

Part 3: Sylvia Plath

Part 4: Robert Lowell

Part 5: Elizabeth Bishop

Part 6: James Merrill

Photo by Jan Claire

In the Beginning

Poet You constellate the myths, O royal oracle of archetypes. Photo and poem by Jan Claire