Imitations

Overview

Not quite translations—yet something much more, much richer, than mere tributes to their original versions—the poems in Imitations reflect Lowell's conceptual, historical, literary, and aesthetic engagements with a diverse range of voices from the Western canon. Moving chronologically from Homer to Pasternak—and including such master poets en route as Baudelaire, Rimbaud, Rilke, and Montale—the fascinating and hugely informed pieces in this book are themselves meant to be read as "a whole," according to Lowell's ...

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Overview

Not quite translations—yet something much more, much richer, than mere tributes to their original versions—the poems in Imitations reflect Lowell's conceptual, historical, literary, and aesthetic engagements with a diverse range of voices from the Western canon. Moving chronologically from Homer to Pasternak—and including such master poets en route as Baudelaire, Rimbaud, Rilke, and Montale—the fascinating and hugely informed pieces in this book are themselves meant to be read as "a whole," according to Lowell's telling Introduction, "a single volume, a small anthology of European poetry."

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Imitations is, so far as I know, the only book of its kind in literature . . . Lowell, who has used materials from other writers, all the way from Homer and Pasternak, has produced a volume of verse which consists of variations on themes provided by these other poets and which is really an original sequence by Robert Lowell of Boston."—Edmund Wilson

"The book has a twofold fascination: it gives access to the private realm of a major poet, showing us how he reads his masters and peers . . . At the same time it provides the reader with . . . creative echoes to a number of important poems."—George Steiner

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780374502607
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
  • Publication date: 10/28/1990
  • Edition description: ENLARGED
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 149
  • Sales rank: 903,870
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.38 (d)

Meet the Author

Robert Lowell, one of America's great men of letters, died in 1977.

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Table of Contents

Introduction xi
Acknowledgements xv
The Killing of Lykaon 1
Three Letters to Anaktoria 3
Children 6
The Great Testament 8
Ballad for the Dead Ladies 15
The Old Lady's Lament for Her Youth 17
Villon's Prayer for His Mother 21
Villon's Epitaph 23
The Infinite 25
Saturday Night in the Village 26
Sylvia 29
Sic Transit 32
Heine Dying in Paris 38
Russia 1812 41
At Gautier's Grave 44
To the Reader 46
My Beatrice 48
Spleen 50
Autumn 51
The Ruined Garden 52
The Flawed Bell 53
Meditation 54
The Injured Moon 55
The Abyss 56
The Swan 57
Voyage to Cythera 60
The Servant 63
The Game 64
The Voyage 66
Nostalgia 74
The Poet at Seven 77
The Drunken Boat 81
Eighteen-Seventy
A Poster 84
Napoleon after Sedan 85
To the French of the Second Empire 86
On the Road 86
At the Green Cabaret 87
A Malicious Girl 88
The Sleeper in the Valley 89
Evil 89
The Lice-Hunters 91
At Gautier's Grave 92
Helen 95
A Roman Sarcophagus 96
The Cadet Picture of My Father 98
Self-Portrait 99
Orpheus, Eurydice and Hermes 100
Pigeons 149
Winter Noon 104
You Knocked Yourself Out 105
Dora Markus 107
Day and Night 110
The Magnolia's Shadow 111
Hitlerian Spring 113
The Coastguard House 115
Arsenio 117
The Chess Player 120
News from Mount Amiata 122
The Eel 125
Little Testament 128
Black Spring 130
September 131
For Anna Akmatova 133
Mephistopheles 135
The Seasons 137
Sparrow Hills 141
Wild Vines 142
In the Woods 143
The Landlord 145
Hamlet in Russia, A Soliloquy 147
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