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Ezra Pound: His Metric and Poetry  by T.S. Eliot
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Ezra Pound: His Metric and Poetry

by T.S. Eliot

Ezra Weston Loomis Pound (1885-1972) was an American poet, critic, and expat, and he was a major figure of the Modernist movement of poetry. The Cantos are what he's known for: they're a long, complex set of poems in 120 sections, each of which is a "canto," and which took up the better part of fifty years to write. These Cantos are informed by what was called Imagism, a poetry movement related to classical Chinese and Japanese poetry, which emphasizes clarity, precision and economy of language.

T.S. Eliot, a contemporary of Pound, put out an essay of criticism called Ezra Pound: His Metric and Poetry. As you might have guessed, Eliot focuses on the complexities of Pound's work (which is often dense and confusing, riddled with other languages and abstract references), trying to suss out the underlying elements at work. Bukowski once said about the Cantos, which are huge and heavy, that they were a "good workout if not a good read"... or something to that effect.

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