James Merrill and W.H. Auden: Homosexuality and Poetic Influence
James Merrill and W.H. Auden offers a substantial analysis of the literary and personal relationship between two major twentieth-century poets. As Gwiazda argues, Auden's prominence in the post-World War II American poetry scene as a homosexual poet and critic makes his impact on Merrill particularly noteworthy. Merrill's imaginary recreation of Auden in his occult verse trilogy The Changing Light at Sandover (1982) offers a powerful statement about the dynamics of poetic influence between gay male poets. Combining archival research, textual analysis, and aspects of queer theory, James Merrill and W.H. Auden examines Sandover's implications to the contentious issues of homosexual identity and self-representation.
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afterlife American Poetry anxiety archangels artistic authority becomes Bergman Book of Ephraim Changing Light Collected Poems creative critical cultural Dante dead death decades describes Dyer’s Hand Edward Mendelson Elizabeth Bishop essay experience Forster Freud gay and lesbian gay male poets gay poet Harold Bloom heterosexual homoerotic homosexual homosexual poets human Ibid idea identity imagination interview J.D. McClatchy James Ingram Merrill James Merrill JM and DJ JM’s John Ashbery Kallman Letter Light at Sandover literary tradition literature living lyrical Maria master Merrill and Jackson Merrill’s poem Merrill’s trilogy metaphor Mirabell modern one’s Ouija board Ouija board trilogy passage Plato poem’s poet’s poetic influence Prose pursuit queer relationship revelations rhetoric Robert same-sex desire says scientific sexual social sonnets speak Stephen Yenser T.S. Eliot theory tion twentieth century University Press verse vision voice W.B. Yeats W.H. Auden Whitman words writing Wystan Yeats York