Protector of the West
Ezra Pound was arguably the finest American-born poet and a first rate Classical scholar. He happened to be born in Idaho, a state not noted for either its poets or Classicists. It was, however, a center of the American Populist Movement, which pitted the (usually family) farmer against the banks and railroads. The Populists called themselves “National-Socialists,” long before that term was heard in Europe.
Pound was born in 1885, making him less than two-years younger than his later hero, Benito Mussolini. This was at the apex of the Populist movement. The Populist Party’s platform for the 1886 election was almost entirely written by Edward Bellamy. Bellamy was a novelist-journalist, whose utopian work, Looking Backward had sold over 1 million copies in the U.S. alone.
Looking Backward is set in the year 2000, and recounts the victory of National-Socialism: the nationalization of the banks and railroads, along with a host of reforms to alleviate the lot of the working-man without invoking Marxism. The syndicalism of Georges Sorel was a major influence upon the Populists, as it was upon the one-time Socialist, Benito Mussolini.
(Mussolini had been named “Benito,” which is not an Italian name, by his anarchist father, in honor of Benito Juárez, the Mexican revolutionary responsible for the execution of Maximilian. Actually, Juárez didn’t last that long: he was disposed of by his lieutenant Díaz, who proceeded to set up a dictatorship, which was 100-times more repressive than anything envisioned by the liberal Austrian Arch-Duke, who had been tricked by Napoleon III into accepting a “crown,” which was created by the French, the Catholic Church, and the Mexican latifundiastas: huge landowners. One should remember that the Spanish Habsburgs had ruled Mexico for centuries. The Habsburg arms — the Roman Double Eagle — are to be found on the Governor’s House in Santa Fe, New Mexico, which was founded during the Habsburg era. So Maximilian, being offered the crown as Emperor of Mexico wasn’t off-the-wall.)
What happened with the Populists? Basically, William Jennings Bryan stole their rhetoric; and Theodore Roosevelt along with Taft gave support to the trade-union movement. Bryan’s “Cross of Gold” speech, in support of the free-silver movement, caused the Populists to support Bryan, and they shared in Bryan’s defeat. Imperialism was the impetus of the hour, as the U.S. attacked and defeated Spain, taking what remained of the Spanish Empire (and sending the Marines to the Philippines, to show them that it was merely a “change of title,” by shooting half-a-million of the “liberated”).
Oscar Wilde once commented, “When a good American dies, he goes to Paris.” Pound didn’t wait until he was dead before leaving the Land of the Free and Hopelessly Vulgar. By 1908, he was living in London. In 1920, he moved to Paris (which was less expensive); and in 1924, he moved to Italy, where he was to remain until the U.S. Army brought him back to the Land of the Victorious and Hopelessly Vulgar — in a cage! Pound was an ardent Fascist and remained one until the day of his death, well over 30 years after the Duce and his mistress, Clara Petacchi, were hung like sides of beef from the rafters of a bombed-out gas station in Milan.
Pound found in Fascist Italy both the “National-Socialism” of the Populists plus a reawakening of the “civilizing” mission of Ancient Rome, of which Pound (the Classicist) was so fond. Pound referred to his poems as “Cantos” — lyrics! — which drew upon the greatest Euro-poets, from Homer on, as their inspiration; and, in his Pisan Cantos (written while confined to a cage in Pisa after WWII, and for which he was awarded the 1949 Bollingen Prize in Poetry) incorporating inspiration from that other great High Culture: the Culture of Confusian China. What was Pound doing in a U.S. Army cage? Awaiting some decision by the U.S. government as to what to do with its most famous poet — who had regularly broadcast pro-Axis speeches from 1941 on!
In the Plutocratic-Marxist alliance of WWII, he found all he had despised since his youth: the joint determination of Bankers and Barbarians to destroy Western Civilization (which, in Pound’s view was personified in Fascist Italy, with Germany a distant second). His slim prose work Jefferson and/or Mussolini drew attention to Jefferson loathing of banks and compared the tyranny of International Finance with British Mercantilism, finding the former worse than the latter. His anti-Semitic speeches were directed solely against Jewish financial control. (Unlike most anti-Semites, he was rabid in his loathing of Jewish financial interests, but totally indifferent toward the Jews qua Jews and was quite disturbed when Mussolini sanctioned the deportation of Italian Jews, who were obviously not financiers.) He described Italian Fascism as “paternally authoritarian” and subscribed to the view that freedom was for those who’d earned it. He described the American concept of free speech as merely “license”: “Free speech, without radio free speech is zero!” was a comment he made in one of his own broadcasts.
Although manifestly guilty of treason under U.S. law, the government felt embarrassed at the prospect of trying him, so they had some medical hacks from the military certify he was insane, and committed him to St. Elizabeths, the federal asylum in Washington from 1946 until 1958, when he was allowed to leave, providing he immediately left the country. That he did, returning to Italy; his last act in the U.S. being to accord the Statue of Liberty the Roman/Fascist salute!
The first of the “Cantos” had appeared in 1917. The last (96-109: Thronos) in 1959. The Whole he considered one vast epic poem, on a Homeric scale; however, it is more an epic reflecting the maturity of an artist and Classicist, in an age which marked the decline of both. One can see in influence of Yeats (who was also markedly pro-Fascist, but died before that could produce a crisis ), Ford Maddox Ford and James Joyce were “cross pollinators” with Pound. T. S. Eliot and Ernest Hemingway [. . .] died before him; therefore, Ezra Pound became the last of the expatriate artists, a tradition that began with Henry James. Certainly some brief excerpt of his work is called for. The following is taken from one of the Pisan Cantos, written in the cage:
this breath wholly covers the mountains
it shines and divides
it nourishes by its rectitude
does no injury
overstanding the earth it fills the nine fields
Boon companion to equity
it joins with the process
lacking it, there is inanition
When the equities are gathered together
as birds alighting
it springeth up vital
If deeds be not ensheaved and garnered in the heart
there is inanition.
I selected this example, because it draws upon the High Culture of China for inspiration, and incorporates within this a Classical maxim, which even those who know no Latin should be aware of. The final phrase (“if deeds be not ensheaved and garnered in the heart / there is inanition”) is a restatement of ACTA NON VERBA! (For those denied access to a dictionary of sufficient scope, “inanition” means “emptiness, a need – like a need for food or drink.”)
So Pound combines the essence of Mandarian art with the essence of the West, affirming the Spenglerian premise that all High Cultures are “transportable.” How many full-time Western symphony orchestras does Tokyo support? EIGHT! (Pound,by the way, was a excellent bassoonist.)
Leaving aside all other considerations, Ezra Pound — Poet and Traitor — PROVES the essential unity of all Euros. From Hailey, Idaho to London, Paris, Rapallo, Rome, an asylum in Washington, D.C. back to die in his beloved Rapallo (where the aging Gore Vidal now spends most of his time), Pound showed that no part of Magna Europa is alien to any Euro. Art, like an orchid, requires a special soil, a special climate to blossom in. A poet was born in the prairies of Idaho, but his genius could not thrive in the same soil as potatoes. Even as thousands of years before, the genius of Ovid atrophied in Tomis, where Augustus had banished him (Ovid had a great influence on Pound), so the genius of Ezra (what a horrid name!) Pound, Classicist, Poet-Supreme, would have atrophied in that backwater of Magna Europa. And so the Euro had to return to the primal soil, that his genius might bloom — yes, and be driven into treason, lest greed and barbarism destroy Magna Europa. “If this be treason, let us make the most of it!” Patrick Henry admonished his colleagues. Pound made as much of it as he could.
That what he saw as a deadly threat to his Race-Culture, he put ahead of the color of his passport may be heinous or not. That is not the issue. The issue is that Hailey, Idaho could give Magna Europa one of Her greatest poets, whose greatness ensued in the main from his ability to absorb all that had gone before and say it anew — even deploying adoptive forms!
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Intellectual honesty dictates that you follow to conclusion that which you have haltingly implied, which is that Pound – advocate of Langston Hughes and Delmore Schwartz – simply was not a racist, He was not a racist where the word is held in condemnation, nor a racist where, as here, the word is taken as a prerequisite to identity. He would have had no patience with the thesis here advocated, that Western culture is the exclusive province of whites. In an other wise fine essay, your “That what he saw as a deadly threat to his Race-Culture…” clanks as fake, and, published here, as pandering. It’s as fake as the poem I once wrote in which, perhaps overcome by the fumes rising off one too many Black History Month calendars, I tried to make the Hellenic Goddess Hekate black.
That dead end aside, if any of you question whether a black man can be a master of “your” culture, my link and site are attached.
But never mind that, let’s have a little more East-West fusion, courtesy of Uncle Ez:
Canto XLIX: For the Seven Lakes
For the seven lakes, and by no man these verses:
Rain; empty river; a voyage,
Fire from frozen cloud, heavy rain in the twilight
Under the cabin roof was one lantern.
The reeds are heavy; bent;
and the bamboos speak as if weeping.
Autumn moon; hills rise about lakes
Evening is like a curtain of cloud,
a blurr above ripples; and through it
sharp long spikes of the cinnamon,
a cold tune amid reeds.
Behind hill the monk’s bell
borne on the wind.
Sail passed here in April; may return in October
Boat fades in silver; slowly;
Sun blaze alone on the river.
Where wine flag catches the sunset
Sparse chimneys smoke in the cross light
Comes then snow scur on the river
And a world is covered with jade
Small boat floats like a lanthorn,
The flowing water closts as with cold. And at San Yin
they are a people of leisure.
Wild geese swoop to the sand-bar,
Clouds gather about the hole of the window
Broad water; geese line out with the autumn
Rooks clatter over the fishermen’s lanthorns,
A light moves on the north sky line;
where the young boys prod stones for shrimp.
In seventeen hundred came Tsing to these hill lakes.
A light moves on the South sky line.
State by creating riches shd. thereby get into debt?
This is infamy; this is Geryon.
This canal goes still to TenShi
Though the old king built it for pleasure
K E I M E N R A N K E I
K I U M A N M A N K E I
JITSU GETSU K O K W A
T A N FUKU T A N K A I
Sun up; work
sundown; to rest
dig well and drink of the water
dig field; eat of the grain
Imperial power is? and to us what is it?
The fourth; the dimension of stillness.
And the power over wild beasts.
I think you misunderstand racism and culture and their relations. I am certainly a racist. I want to live apart from other races, protect my people from other races, and prevent members of my race (my extended family) from mixing with other races.
Yet that is no bar to appreciating the culture of people of other races, and appreciating the culture of people of other races does not require living and breeding with them.
I read Lao Tzu, Confucius, and Mishima; I listen to Mendelssohn, Mahler, and Bernard Herrmann; I read Heine, Hannah Arendt, and Leo Strauss; I listen to Thelonious Monk, John Coltrane, Miles Davis, and Jimi Hendrix. I can appreciate all of them without living in the same country or even the same age, much less tolerating miscegenation and aggression from other races.
I would be interested to learn more about Pound’s views on race. He does not really discuss race per se. But he did love his own and wish to see them preserved.
I don’t really know if a non-white can master white culture. There is a difference between mastery and mimicry, and mimics do not produce great art; but mastery always bears a stamp of the person, and if race matters to personality, then there will be something foreign about the works of a non-white artist working in a European idiom.
This goes more for the creative arts than the performing arts. I can’t hear anything Chinese about Yo-You Ma’s performances of Bach, for instance, and it is perfectly conceivable that non-white performers will continue to preserve western art even if our people cease to exist.
I like a white man who is racist and will call himself a racist. It’s refreshing. I only wish more black people would do the same, without hiding behind the “Only whites can be racist” fig-leaf. Racism without hate. If such a formula can be sustained, it might shake the world.
I’ve come to understand some of the broad outlines of this movement, as reflected here, in VDARE, and a few other places. Yet I clearly haven’t gotten the finer details, because the question of whether a black can master “white culture” gives me a moment’s pause. I hadn’t thought I was attempting to master “white culture.” I had thought I was attempting to master High Culture. It was High Culture that was Pound’s concern as well, even moreso than “Western Culture”; it is in the name of High Culture that Pound unites China and “Magna Europa.” He quite literally does not see any important distinction. That which excels, is excellent, wherever it might be found. His is a *strict* elitism.
I see myself as not involved in “white culture,” a term which I admit still seems a touch experimental. “White” hasn’t been around that long. Not four centuries ago, there were only English and Irish, Scotsmen and Swedes. I might warn about the danger of embracing “white” as a marker of identity. “Black,” embraced after Stokely Carmichael et al, has proved disastrous for us. It put us on a spiral in which the more criminal one was, the more violent, the more antisocial – the more *authentic* in one’s “blackness.” We didn’t always have such soaring out-of-wedlock birthrates and violent crime rates. Think carefully about the full valence of “white.” “White” has, if you will, its own dark side. Defenseless innocence. Effeminacy. I suggest that in some subtle way, the effete liberal packed with rhetoric hot from some college orientation speech, who surrenders his woman and his pride, will always be “whiter” than the readers of Counter-Currents. Ask Mark Dyal sometime about what Eldridge Cleaver had to say about the axis, White Man/White Woman/Black Man/Black Woman.
No, I don’t see myself as working within “white culture,” but I am indisputably working within Western culture, which suggests a subtle distinction between “white” and “Western.” I see we blacks as among the newest members of Western civilization, But it has been just shy of 400 years, and we’re not “foreign” any more. Magna Europa has simply sprouted a new ethnicity. A black one.
All the best, and thanks for video “The Old Negro Space Program,” which had me laughing so hard I cried.
Fancy finding Todd Jackson here! Long time no see, hear, etc. Hope all is well. Look for us, because we’ve been looking for you. Terry and Eva
RE: Todd Jackson
I think far too much is made of the distinction “White,” “Western,” and “European.” The hard distinctions are made by those out to separate biological implications from “purely” cultural ones. All of these terms have their nuances, but when I speak of “Western” culture I typically mean “European” culture. “White” is simply a way to draw attention to the race or biology of the matter.
Furthermore, I find it odd to say that “White” culture has only been around for the past few centuries or that “White” people have only been around that long. Though I do understand what you are suggesting. It’s drawing attention to the European colonial experience from which the term “White” really has its origins. That being said, I think the notion that “Whiteness” is a totally meaningless non-identity constructed for capitalist oppression (Marxist race theory suggests this, not necessarily you, Mr. Jackson) is really short-changing the whole thing, to say the least.
To get to the point, I believe this utterly ignores the natural process of ethnogenesis which occurred in the American colonies (and to some extent all European colonies). Now this would REALLY sit uneasy with the current mainstream’s interpretation of American history because it suggests a link between “White” and “American.” That opens one massive can of worms. Yet we know this is not, and was not, uncommon among Americans. I recall the old Ku Klux Klan posters declaring “America for the Americans!” Additionally, this interpretation is not unheard of in academia. It’s simply downplayed in order to go full bore on the multicultural melting pot “nation of immigrants” interpretation. Our (very long and impressive) history of nativism likewise suggests this. The historian Eric Kaufmann (in no way a fellow-traveller with NANR types) wrote an interesting essay about this very topic called “American Exceptionalism Reconsidered: Anglo-Saxon Ethnogenesis in the ‘Universal’ Nation, 1776-1850”: http://www.scribd.com/doc/58583488/Kaufmann-EP-American-Exceptionalism-Reconsidered-Anglo-Saxon-Ethnogenesis-in-the-Universal-Nation-1776-1850-Journal-of-American-Studies-33
He calls the American Revolution the first emergence of proto-Nationalism. Of course, he doesn’t mention too much about the obvious identification as “Whites” and you won’t hear any of this in American History 101.
I would highly suggest that the NANR explores the White/Western/European division in general and the American ethnogenesis in particular. I believe the latter would be of the utmost importance to any NANR world-view. I remember hearing Greg Johnson asking how to foster a pan-European American consciousness and the truth is we already had something like it. The very real connections between all Europeans should be obvious, and on this continent we’ve had centuries of an ongoing “White American” ethnogenesis which has been able to incorporate other Europeans as they fully assimilated and married in.
Happy Halloween to all!
I’d also like to preempt any questions about the seemingly divisive nature of American ethnogenesis on the one hand and “ethnic” Whites on the other. One could easily point out that American nativism, for instance, has historically been hostile to Catholics, Irish, Slavs and Italians. Very true. One could go further and point out what seems to be an increasingly popular anti-White identity charge: “The Irish and Italians were not considered White but now they are.” This is due to some books (How the Irish Became White, among others) and a host of Leftist academics who are quite upfront with their goal to shatter White identity and hegemony. I remember picking up a book written by a Black “anti-racist,” opening it up to a random page and reading that “we” should do everything in our power to spread the idea that “Whites,” and even simply “Europeans,” are terribly divided. Foster those divisions.
What we need to remember in this equation is American ethnogenesis. The popular American identity was ethno-racial. Much like the “African-American” identity. So, do we judge the Germans for a history of anti-Slavic sentiment and say that there can not be a common European heritage or identity? I am inclined to believe that Germanic peoples and Slavic peoples would agree that they share deep common roots, certainly when compared to extra-European peoples. Why should it be different for Americans? If any Americans claimed that the Irish, for example, were not White it was due only to cultural and religious differences. Any self-respecting Leftist would then point out “How can “race” be a biological thing?” The problem lies in the following:
A) the U.S. federal government has never considered Irish, Italians, Russians or any other Europeans to be “non-White.” The official US stance was simple: Europeans = White. And this is the opinion of nearly all Americans to this day (much more recent nonsense confusing the anthropological term “Caucasian” and “White” on the US census aside).
B) Common American people may have referred to some of these people as “non-White,” but they largely meant a completely different thing. Namely that by culture and religion they did not have what it took to be considered, without assimilation, American. Americans of that time would have viewed the term “ethnic” as meaning “foreign” and so would have likely seen themselves as not being ethnic at all (this holds true for many White Americans today). A similar semantic problem revolved around the term “White.” No American would have considered Irishmen non-European, though perhaps some would have said they were “not White.” A Protestant Englishman, however, would likely be similar enough to White Americans of that time to not elicit any strong overt sense of foreignness. Likewise, for an Irishman converted to Protestantism. Americans identified themselves and their culture as “White” and when they really wanted to drive home the sense of foreignness, such as might be the case during mass immigration of ethnically and religiously different peoples, they referred to them as “not White” meaning “not being like us.”
It was a fairly simple case of ethnic conflict where Americans were the native ethnic group. Not recognizing the ethnic implications of the term “White” for many Americans has lead to some very confusing conclusions which are used by “anti-racists” to jump to their desired goal. The arguments are essentially turned on their heads when we recognize an American ethnogenesis. Irish (even Catholic ones) especially were present in the American colonies from the very earliest days and all of them, as Europeans, were considered “White.” Why? Because they were comparatively few, possessed no cultural threat and assimilated rapidly. Irish Catholics of the mid-19th century variety were sometimes considered alien and perhaps “not really White.” Why? Because they comprised a massive influx of immigrants, often densely populated in urban areas, and posed at that time a considerable cultural threat to the Protestant native White American population. The Irish of that century did in fact intermarry quite frequently with native Americans. I’ve never heard of a single marriage being outlawed between an American and an Irish person because they broke any interracial marriage laws.
American nativism should have little trouble incorporating a pan-European outlook and the NANR must come to terms with a ready-made White American identity. To reiterate: The popular American identity was ethno-racial. I’m not sure how much more of a Godsend the NANR could ask for. It’s a more specific ethnic American identity yet with a broad respect for Europeans and European culture in general. That being said, I completely understand any hesitance in playing up this aspect because of the fact that it would be necessary to disassociate this with any flag-waving “patriotism” for the current liberal/capitalist U.S. government which would run counter to the intended goal. On the other hand, letting this identity go would be a grave mistake not only because of its tactical importance but because it truly is the identity of many (if not most) White Americans.
Mr. Carpenter, thank you for your responses, which I nearly missed. Your points are very well-taken, with the observation that whiteness developed out of the colonial experience particularly noteworthy.
While I agree that “I think far too much is made of the distinction ‘White,’ ‘Western,’ and ‘European’, ” it is inescapable that my work, which has little to no overt reference to blackness or to race at all, is Western but not white. That much said, my work is so rare in this regard that it is the proverbial “exception that proves the rule.” The last time I checked, America’s coffee shops do not seem to be overrun by black poets scribbling about Greek Gods. The overwhelming majority of work produced by black artists is heavily racially marked, and should the NAR be successful in its goals, it will surely be categorized as belonging more to an “African diaspora” rather than Western tradition.
Mr. Jackson, having read your poem, “Interrogation in Ice and Silver”, I am going to guess that you are a black American. It is a lovely piece of work; however, as Greg Johnson stated, there is something “foreign” about a work produced by an artist in the framework of an alien idiom. It is difficult to pinpoint, and without going into a forensic analysis I can only say that certain turns of phrase, certain sequences of words, some imagery perhaps, strike me as “not white.” In fact, they not only strike me as “not white”, they strike me as having a positive black identity.
It is likely that a Chinese person reading a translation of some of Ezra Pound’s Chinese-style verse, would also detect something foreign in the phraseology, the sequences of thoughts, images and words… The racial soul manifests through art, probably more purely than in any other sphere. It’s not surprising that people are especially perceptive or sensitive when it comes to the presence of foreign elements in artistic works.
To add to your point: we should also note that Ezra Pound was a notoriously awful translator of Chinese, and he completely misunderstood the nuances of both Buddhism and Taoism by creating false oppositions between them and Confucianism. His China cantos, while very interesting and fun to read, are based almost entirely on an 18th century history book by a Jesuit missionary.
Hugh Kenner had to rescue Pound’s Cathay material from complete critical obscurity by saying, “No no! The translations are truly bad, but they make for great war-time original compositions!” And he’s right, too.
Pound was a damn good poet, one of the best in America. I say this on purely aesthetic grounds. Aesthetics before ideology. But going to Pound for the wisdom of China isn’t the smartest thing. He was bona fide Westerner, and also a pretty noticeable American, through and through.
Miss Gray, you are the first person to have noted a black identity in “Interrogation in Ice and Silver,” but I don’t run from it. It’s probably inevitable that that trace is there. I’m black. Whether the significant fact about that is inherent or a matter of upbringing, it’s hard to say. I can hear something “white” in Bix Beiderbecke and Stan Getz, without which their music wouldn’t be what it is, to all our loss.
All I can say is that I never intended to add any black note, or to claim it as an artifact of black culture. I simply wanted to write a great poem, and to praise my city and my God, who happens to be a whiter God than Jesus.
(That sound you hear is Malcolm X rolling in his grave. He does that a lot lately.)
Izak, I was a student of Hugh Kenner’s, in his last year at what was then THE Johns Hopkins University (someone must have anticipated that there might soon be others), and recall him making just that point about Chinese ideograms. His error was that of a poet and amateur scholar overextending himself into Sinology, rather than that of a white man overextending himself into Asian culture – not that you imply otherwise.
Pound insisted that a properly sensitive person could simply look at Chinese ideograms and SEE what they mean, without even the intervening knowledge of the Chinese language. Though he did know the Chinese language, enough to make bad translations that are fine poetry.
I too was a poet pretending to be a scholar. The same Hugh Kenner who castigated Pound on his powers of translation decades later awarded me a C+ in his class. I deserved no better. But I got to shake a hand that had shaken Pound’s, which, pagan that I am, was the only reason I applied to Hopkins in the first place.
I too had always thought of America as the Land of the Victorious and Hopelessly Vulgar until Counter – Currents began lifting the veil which had hidden the true America struggling underneath.
Thank you for this very interesting and informative article. As I commented on another current article, Ezra Pound has long been one of my favorite poets; but I was unaware of his connection with Idaho and the Populist movement. I find this particularly fascinating because I am a classicist living in Idaho myself. I have never visited Hailey – I wonder if I’m expecting too much to hope that they have there some sort of tribute or memorial to their greatest son? If so, I’d certainly pack my husband and children in the car and make pilgrimage to see it.
“where the aging Gore Vidal now spends most of his time”
Um, Gore Vidal died three months ago.
Um, this article was written ten years ago.
I’ve always enjoyed the delicate and alien writing and sensibility of Ancient China. No White or Caucasian could have ever created it, but we can appreciate it and allow it to influence us. Likewise the paganism of the American Indian – very different from our own but beautiful and admirable in its own way.
Is it to much to assert the opposite, that we too are unique and irreplaceable?
Mr. Jackson, you speak like a true man. Your words are assured without being disrespectful, and insightful without being cutting. Your poetry is refreshing and solemn. I’d like to meet you. Do you live in the west?
Ms. Gray, I too am (somewhat of) a classicist who lives in your state. What portion do you live in (i.e. north, central, south, etc…), and if I sent a reachable email address to Greg Johnson, would your family perhaps be willing to meet mine?
2nd try – not high hopes. People get creeped out and so we spin like atoms.
Mr. Jackson, do you live in Vegas, like your poems imply?
Ms. Gray, my family and I live in Central Idaho. We’re always looking to add friends. My oldest children read Latin and some Homeric Greek. My youngest are just learning.
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