Diving in head first

Diving in head first

Keats was a bold player, keeping his eye determinedly focussed on achieving enduring greatness, not on the fads and fashions of the critical present. His letters reveal his willingness to fly in the face of, and transcend, the vagaries of reviewers. Here he uses a...
Fine writing, fine doing

Fine writing, fine doing

My earliest impressions of Keats were as a languishing poetic type, not a man of action.  Now, after getting to know him through his letters (among the best I have read), he comes across as a vital, life-loving and out-stepping person, even though destroyed by illness...
The art of story-telling

The art of story-telling

Henry Miller is himself a wonderful writer, and this comment about a critical element of successful story-telling took me by surprise. While I am not sure what to make of it, I’ve also turned it over in my mind to see if it would serve as a license to take...
The sonnet never written

The sonnet never written

This is one of the longest and most entertaining chapters in Machado de Assis’ novel Don Casmurro, a fictional memoir of the eponymous narrator.  Many of the other chapters are shorter than a sonnet, but I liked this one, describing the sonnet he almost wrote,...
A writer’s retreat

A writer’s retreat

We first noticed it when it was still a construction site, but even on a grimly dank and overcast day, there was something about this tall, light, filigree structure in the middle of fields on the edge of a farming village.  You could see it from miles away and we did...

Pin It on Pinterest