The Modern Poets: An American-British Anthology

By John Malcolm Brinnin; Bill Read | Go to book overview
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EZRA POUND, born October 30, 1885, in Hailey, Idaho, lives with his wife, the former Dorothy Shakespeare, in Rapallo, Italy. He attended the University of Pennsylvania and Hamilton College, taught Romance languages for a brief time at Pennsylvania and at Wabash Collegein Indiana, and then went to Europe to begin a long and famous career as an expatriate. He first settled in London, where his skill as an editor and his zeal as a promoter of new forces in literature were given wide exercise. In 1924 he went to live in Italy and eventually became a propagandist for the Fascist regime, an activity that led to his being brought back to the United States in 1945 as a prisoner of the American Army on a charge of treason. When psychiatrists declared him mentally incompetent to stand trial, he was committed to St. Elizabeth's Hospital, in Washington, where he continued to work on his magnum opus, The Cantos. On the intercession of Robert Frost and others, he was released in 1958 and allowed to return to Italy. His dramatic history has been given wide publicity; yet he will most likely be remembered, not for his personal aberrations, but for his widely felt influence as a great craftsman on the course of poetry and the history of language.

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