Author Archives: leewatkins

Flowers of Paradise: Life and Loss in Christina Rossetti

Poetry means life, and life means purpose. A beating heart. But Christina Rossetti spent a lot of time contemplating what is dead and gone: death, and loss of the beloved. “Life is gone, the love too is gone …” says … Continue reading

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From the Reading Diary: Kenneth Patchen’s Selected Poems

Kenneth Patchen is interested in, among other things, the way the branches move on the trees to create visions and to scratch the surface of the stars in the night sky. He’s also interested in the cruelty that men – … Continue reading

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Notes on William Burroughs to Allen Ginsberg May 5th, 1951

In a letter to Allen Ginsberg, William Burroughs seems to be saying that he’s incapable of envy. Envy arises from a particular kind of ignorance, of which Burroughs has cured himself: “Envy and resentment is only possible when you can … Continue reading

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On Ursula K. Le Guin

The poet’s task is to find the right words, or the true names of things. And in A Wizard of Earthsea, that’s the task of wizards too. You find the thing’s true name by capturing its essence: by seeing what … Continue reading

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A Feeling of Connection: Anthony Burgess and His Characters

Anthony Burgess tells his story through his characters, in a way that makes him stand out among writers. Many writers of fiction tell their stories primarily through the narrator’s voice, and characters are presented to the reader through this medium. … Continue reading

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A Sad Note: Henry Miller’s Aller Retour New York

Henry Miller believed that a real writer can find inspiration in anything, be it “a smokestack or a button”. I always enjoy Miller, whatever he’s writing about, because whatever the subject matter he’ll make it interesting. But some of his … Continue reading

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Henry Miller and Doing More Work

If you want to create – to paint, to write, to make music – you need to do so in the face of the pressures and demands of modern life. It’s about maintaining an inner equilibrium, carving out a space … Continue reading

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