Nov 1, 2012

Words in air - Elizabeth Bishop

Words in air : the complete correspondence between Elizabeth Bishop and Robert Lowell - Bishop, Elizabeth

Summary: A profile of the intimate relationship between the two twentieth-century poet friends draws on their thirty-year correspondence to offer insight into how they inspired each other, the ways in which they viewed their private and surrounding worlds, and their experiences within the literary community. - (Baker & Taylor)

Choice Reviews
The complete correspondence between Bishop (1911-79) and Lowell (1917-77), who were friends as well as fellow poets, will be warmly welcomed by scholars of both poets. Though most of their letters are already available in separate volumes--Robert Giroux's edition of Bishop's letters (One Art: Letters, 1994) and Saskia Hamilton's edition of Lowell's (The Letters of Robert Lowell, CH, Jan'06, 43-2675)--this collection adds new letters and creates a rich, compelling narrative. Bishop and Lowell met in 1947 and were immediately drawn to each other, both personally and professionally. Their correspondence covers a period of some 30 years and contains lively discussions about the poetry of their contemporaries, politics (both American and Brazilian), and their own writing. Indeed, they influenced each other's work, aspired to each other's talents, and wrote poems for each other. They also wrote more personally, of their love affairs and their respective illnesses: Bishop suffered throughout her life from severe asthma, depression, and alcoholism; Lowell, from what would now be called bipolar disorder. Their understanding of and affection for each other is clear throughout their correspondence, which ended only on Lowell's death. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty; general readers. Copyright 2009 American Library Association.

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