At the Brink of Infinity: Poetic Humility in Boundless by James E. von der Heydt

By James E. von der Heydt

From pop culture to politics to vintage novels, quintessentially American texts take their idea from the belief of infinity. within the awesome literary century inaugurated by way of Ralph Waldo Emerson, the lyric too looked as if it would come across chances as unlimited because the U.S. mind's eye. This increases the query: What occurs while boundlessness is greater than only a determine of speech? Exploring new horizons is something, yet really taking a look at the horizon itself is whatever altogether diverse. during this rigorously crafted research, James von der Heydt shines a brand new gentle at the lyric craft of Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, Elizabeth Bishop, and James Merrill and considers how their seascape-vision redefines poetry's purpose.

Emerson famously freed U.S. literature from its previous and opened it as much as vastness; within the following century, a succession of great, rigorous poets took the philosophical demanding situations of such freedom all too heavily. dealing with the unmarked horizon, Emersonian poets capture—and are captured by—a stark, astringent model of human good looks. Their uncompromising visions of limitlessness reclaim infinity's right legacy—and provide American poetry its side. Von der Heydt's booklet recovers the secret in their world.

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