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Friday, July 2, 2010


Two-times Pulitzer winner William S. Merwin, one of the country's most distinguished and productive poets, has been named Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry of the United States.

Wow, that is a mouthful, but fully deserved.  As Philip Kennicott observes in The Washington Post, Merwin, a resident of Hawaii, has explored the usual poetic themes "with uncommon rigor, clarity, ecstatic vision and depth."

He also quotes from a 1967 poem, which the poet (then forty years old) called "the anniversary of my death."

Every year without knowing it I have passed the day
When the last fires will wave to me
And the silence will set out
Tireless traveler
Then I will no longer
Find myself in life as in a strange garment ...

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