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Robert Kelly


The sculptor Claire Woolner, in a letter to me from California, quoted from a letter that Dorothea Tanning had written to Joseph Cornell on March 3, 1948. In the letter, she spoke of feelings of revulsion towards most things, wondering how Cornell avoided such.

Remembering Jonathan Williams (March 8, 1929–March 16, 2008)

I miss the elegance of the man, the energy of the poet, and above all the generosity that made sure publishing was publick-ing, and that brought to the commonwealth (as he might call it), the shivering needy children we are, news that concerned us and made us better—or at least (often) made us laugh.

Radial Asymmetries

The essayist and fiction writer Guy Davenport died just after the first of the year, at age 77. On an afternoon in May, Robert Kelly came over from Bard to “my side of the river,” to High Falls, and we sat down to discuss Davenport’s life and works. 

ADAMAGICA: Magic and Iconolatry in Film

When we look at the sad, often ridiculous, lives of the great ceremonial magicians, it is obvious, in any conventional sense of success—wealth or happiness—that magic doesn’t work.

Night Thoughts

It may be that any poem as we read it is only some of the first few spring leaves of the actual poem, whose true unfolding—from deepest root to flower to fruit to recreative seed—is to be found in its proliferating, uttering of itself in us.


The Brooklyn Rail

SEPT 2023

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