Selected poems

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Penguin Books, 1997 - Poetry - 182 pages
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Edwin Arlington Robinson's finely crafted, formal rhythms mirror the tension the poet sees between life's immutable circumstances and humanity's often tragic attempts to exert control. At once dramatic and witty, his poems lay bare the loneliness and despair of life in genteel small towns ("Tilbury Down" and "The Mill"), the tyranny of love ("Eros Turrannos" and "The Unforgiven"), and unspoken, unnoticed suffering ("The Wandering Jew", and "Isaac and Archibald"). In addition, the fictional characters he created in "Reuben Bright", "Miniver Cheevy", "Richard Cory", and the historical figures he brought to life -- Lincoln in "The Master" and the great painter in "Rembrandt to Rembrandt" -- harbor demons and passions the world treats with indifference or cruelty. With an Introduction that sheds light on Robinson's influence on poets from Eliot and Pound to Frost and Berryman, this collection brings an unjustly neglected poet to new readers.

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Contents

Calvary
10
Credo
23
Aunt Imogen
39
Copyright

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About the author (1997)

Edwin Arlington Robinson was a poet. He was born on December 22, 1869 in Head Tide, Maine. Robinson attended Harvard University from 1891 to 1893. Robinson published two volumes of poetry. To make ends meet, Robinson worked as a checker of shale used to build the New York subway system. Theodore Roosevelt later helped Robinson get a job as a clerk in the New York Customs House, a position he held until 1910. Robinson's Collected Poems won the 1921 Pulitzer Prize. He also won Pulitzer in 1924 and 1927 for The Man Who Died Twice and Tristram. Robinson died on April 5, 1935.

Robert Faggen is Barton Evans and H. Andrea Neves Professor of Literature, Claremont McKenna College.

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