Vachel Lindsay (Nicholas Vachel Lindsay) (vā´chəl lĬn´zē), 1879–1931, American poet, b. Springfield, Ill., studied at Hiram College, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the New York School of Art. Lindsay made tours selling his poems and drawings, living as a modern-day troubadour. He was particularly effective when reading his own poems. His poetry at its best is virile and strong. It has a fine spoken music, often enhanced by jazz rhythms. Volumes of his poetry include General William Booth Enters into Heaven (1913), The Congo (1914), The Chinese Nightingale (1917), and Collected Poems (1938). Lindsay was plagued by poverty and illness in his later years, and the quality of his poetry declined.
See his autobiographical Adventures While Preaching the Gospel of Beauty (1914) and A Handy Guide for Beggars (1916); his letters (ed. by A. J. Armstrong, 1940); biographies by E. L. Masters (1935, repr. 1969) and M. Harris (1975); studies by J. T. Flanagan, comp. (1970) and A. Massa (1970).
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Publication information: Article title: Lindsay, Vachel. Encyclopedia title: The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. © 2012 The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia © 2012, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. Used with the permission of Columbia University Press. All Rights Reserved. Publisher: The Columbia University Press. Place of publication: Not available. Publication year: 2013.
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