By John Updike
John Updike's first choice of verse because his Collected Poems, 1953-1993 brings jointly fifty-eight poems, 3 of them of substantial length.
The 4 sections soak up, so as: the United States, its towns and airplanes; the poet's lifestyles, his early life, birthdays, and illnesses; international commute, to Europe and the tropics; and, starting with the lengthy "Song of Myself," lifestyle, its furnishings and consolations.
There is little of the sunshine verse with which Mr. Updike all started his writing profession approximately fifty years in the past, yet a mild contact may be felt in his nimble manipulation of the ghosts of metric order, in his caressing of the residing textures of items, and in his reluctance to wave see you later to all of it.
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Additional resources for Americana and Other Poems
The city’s inhabitants are “Human machines actioned by hope and ambition” (2) whose routine is determined by the city’s socioeconomic structures. At the same time, their machine-like actions are fuelled by human aspiration that transcends this routinized practice. Giovannitti’s sociopolitical vision of modernity is more affirmative than Eliot’s in the sense that he believes in the possibility of a collective subjectivity to rise not from but with and through the city. Instead of dissolving the speaker in the ungraspable, hostile social reality of the metropolis, and instead of simply celebrating modernity’s supposed progress (as Marinetti did), the poem rewrites the speaker into a collective poetic subjectivity that can only be realized through an engagement of the city’s material structures.
Gabaccia 81–105). In addition to this class-based cosmopolitanism, Giovannitti arrived in the United States equipped with a profound grasp of Western culture, with Renaissance and biblical imagery forming constant reference points in his poetry. 3 But Giovannitti’s reputation was established when he became a successful labor organizer. The few important scholarly accounts that analyze Giovannitti’s writings have consequently focused primarily on his autobiographical poems. Indeed, large parts of Giovannitti’s first collection of poetry, Arrows in the Gale (1914), were written while he was imprisoned after the Lawrence textile strike and cannot be understood apart from his personal and political situations.
From the time of what John P. Diggins has called the “Lyrical Left” (Diggins 93–144; cf. Wetzsteon 1–91) to the time of the Popular Front in the 1930s—the coalition of Communists, socialists, and New Deal progressives that was united in its antifascism and its interest in the arts as an educational tool—engaged writers tied poetry to political activism and frequently used it as a means of mass mobilization. The works of Arturo Giovannitti, Edwin Rolfe (1909–1954), and Muriel Rukeyser (1913–1980) exemplify this intersection of poetic expression and political activism.
Americana and Other Poems by John Updike