Amiable insight into the time of the skunk
- Robert Lowell.
Time of the skunk: Collected Works of Robert Lowell, by Robert Lowell, by Robert Giroux, translated by Cheng Jia, Daya culture, Guangxi People's publishing house, July 2020
Robert Lowell is one of the most outstanding American poets in the last century. Most of his life in his sixties is spent in the recovery period after mental illness. According to the poet Walcott, what helps him recover is not only medicine, but also the power of poetry creation. He has really written praiseworthy poems, and enjoys a high reputation in the world of poetry. Elizabeth Bishop, another American poet, and Henry James are the central spokesmen of American literature.
Lowell is also famous in China. From the frequency of his being picked up and quoted, we are fresh. His attraction to domestic poets and readers is weakened by his curiosity in foreign countries. On the contrary, his works have been translated systematically in foreign countries. This collection of Lowell's \
The unusual advantage of poets' comments
The poet writes the prose, scolds the article, is considered to be the bigger representation. Many poets use prose to state that poetry is not all elegant, and express the consciousness and experience that can not be fully expressed in poetry, even to defend their own literary career. However, Lowell seldom wrote prose. As Walcott said, prose writing was performed in the United States of America's leisurely League. This is what Lowell disliked. He put too much energy into poetry, and his writing impulse was enough, so he was reluctant to make numerous comments. In any case, it is of great significance to collect and edit his only articles (many of which are incomplete).
This collection of essays is divided into three parts. The first part is about the contemporary poets' essays, which are basically triggered by various opportunities, such as mourning the poet, publishing a new book and so on. The second part is about Ovid, Hawthorne and other classical writers and the totality of poetry. The third series focuses on interviews, memories, and some discussions on detailed poems.
The success of a certain kind of opportunity, naturally will have a feeling, write temperament, light, enough insight, fortune quick three single, truly show the great poet's insight and unrestrained. When it comes to the detailed poets, there are gentle memories and deep understanding. When it comes to praising, it is not afraid to be stingy when it is time to criticize. The wit and playfulness of a poet can be seen everywhere. For example, when it comes to frost, \
When poets talk about poetry, they have a rare advantage. Because of the fact that, compared with the critics who pursue cultural interpretation from an academic perspective, poets are more willing to make judgments from experience, skill and style. His starting point is to write the more wonderful things inside. In HINI, brotsky, Walcott and zagayevsky, we can see the standard of poets talking about poetry. It is really sharp to drive away the family. When Heaney talks about bishop, she immediately catches her most charming things -- the soft tone, the perfect rhetoric, the hard ground of art surpassing psychology. When a poet talks about poetry, he not only has the feeling of looking from the outside, but also has the insight of watching from the inside. He not only tells you what the poet means, but also tells you why he is so. This is the biggest difference between the poet and the critic. The internal not all elegant observation is the main foundation of the poet's criticism. In addition to completing the perspective, it is more direct and sincere.
What the censor lacks is exactly what the poet finds most difficult: experience, technical sensitivity. When people who do not write poetry talk about poetry, their biggest regret is not the lack of technical analysis of poetry, but that they fall into too much interpretation and lose their sense of reality of poetry. We also see the defects brought about by the beginning of the new denouncement school, that is, in the interpretation of the works, it is too extended, ignoring the temperament of the poet, the formation mechanism, external customs and speaking characteristics of poetry, and dare not judge from the aesthetic style and the overall thinking realm, and are too rigid in details. At a certain level, it becomes the elucidation of the critic's elegance rather than the poet's original intention. Like Wendler's bland reproaches, he is still very young. Moreover, even great critics like Wendler are inexperienced when they talk about poetry. Naturally, the censor also has his upper hand, that is, he has a broader vision and is more willing to think about poetry in the group elegance. This is a digression.
The deepest understanding is the insight of life itself
This kind of poet's insight is reflected in Lowell's anthology. He is more fresh about what his companions want to reach out and how their style is formed. His analysis of the theme of Paterson is impressive. When he compared Hart Crane's bridge with Pound's Psalms, he directly pointed out that Paterson had the upper hand and the other two books were inferior. In a short time, he enhanced my understanding of these poetry collections.
His essays are not only comments on detailed works, but also his understanding of literature. When it comes to Williams' style which is so easy to imitate, he points out that his rhythm and nature are not interesting. Talking about frost, he depicts a vivid image. A little homely comment is like saying that an old man in the village vividly describes the characteristics of his creation, which we can't easily understand from the works and other comments. Speaking of Stevens's philosophical poems, foreign countries annotate them from the perspective of common symbols and metaphysics, but give their opinions directly from temperament and skills: \
I boast that these essays not only teach the writer of poetry, but also all people, because he is talking about the most basic concepts of literature. These judgments will convey the elegance and thinking behind them. How do we understand a poet? A new poet we read? Accumulation of the public, will have such a judgment. Literature and art are the same, in their understanding, there is no less than experience.
Yes, although the article is fragmented, when Lowell talks about these detailed poems and poets, what he shows more is his understanding of the art of writing.
In other words, it is a kind of boasting of poetry.
Boasting that it's young, about talent and the art of speaking. Poetry has its sociology, but it is the art of speaking first. There are also some poets who talk about all kinds of poems as if they are just commenting on their own poems. However, Lowell and all the great poets have one thing in common, that is, they respect the various styles and start from the characteristics of the poets themselves. Without too many presupposed theories, they will have foreign prejudices. Respect for the diversity of styles is the basis of literary criticism. Starting from my work every child and incorporating the overall judgment, it is closer to what it is. Knowing what those techniques mean is the greatest advantage of the poet's insight.
From this anthology, we can tell the other wall of a poet, his not all elegant point, willing to share with others, clear that one-sided. In his poems, those hidden things are clear, but they are more focused on detailed rhetoric and the dark revelation of mysteries. Closer to the essence of experience, sublime moment. In prose, he is amiable and tells you what he wants. He said it so well that we read our understanding of many things in his hope.
Poetry offers a way to feel and reach the world, but it may not be too profound. And the poet's prose, in poetry and we build a bridge, let us understand poetry, and then better understand literature, life. It is not a supplement to poetry, but an insight into literature and life.
Do you think that academic life can blunt the intuitive sensitivity of writers and professors?
Lowell: the danger of teaching is that it's too close to what you're doing - close and not close. You will become a master of teaching, but you will not be familiar with practice for the first time. However, if you want to write a poem and make it very important, the idea of creating a poem temporarily is different from teaching.
Do you think it also cherishes you, so that you will not be affected by anything it brings when you read poetry and children's talk carefully?
Lowell: I'm sure writing is not a craft, that is, it's not something you can do after you've learned some skills. It has to come from the deep impulse of the essence, the inspiration from the deep of the essence. This is not to be taught. Teaching can make you more solemn and voluntary, and make you write less.
You rarely write comments on the bias?
Lowell: Yes, I've written several comprehensive reviews. Write one or two articles a year.
-- from an interview with Frederick Seidel
Author / Wang Zhijun