“At the Political Front”: Affirming Levertov’s Poetics of Witness

“I have tended to read Denise Levertov for the news, thinking of her, more than any other American poet, as a reporter or witness at the political front.” – Patricia Hampl “A Witness of Our Time” 167 I would like to end my section on Levertov with a moment of affirmation, seeking finally to reclaimContinue reading ““At the Political Front”: Affirming Levertov’s Poetics of Witness”

“It doesn’t cohere”: Read-ing Levertov as Anarchist

Of course, my very inclusion of Denise Levertov in this project, especially in this section alongside the self-professed anarchists John Cage, Jackson Mac Low, and Robert Duncan, is both contentious and strange, and requires, I should think, some explanation. It is probably inarguable that Levertov was never an anarchist, although she was certainly an ardentContinue reading ““It doesn’t cohere”: Read-ing Levertov as Anarchist”

“I multitude:” The Self in Levertov’s Poetry

As I noted in my previous plateau, Denise Levertov’s conception of a poetic writing-self behind her poetry is integral to both the aesthetic and political dimensions of her work. In terms of a postanarchist reading practice, Levertov’s reliance on a seemingly monadic idea of the authorial self is one that, in many ways, runs counterContinue reading ““I multitude:” The Self in Levertov’s Poetry”