Literary Birthday – 1 March – Robert Lowell

Robert Lowell was born 1 March 1917 and died 12 September 1977.

Five Quotes

  1. In the end, there is no end.
  2. Sometimes nothing is so solid to me as writing – I suppose that’s what a vocation means – at times a torment, a bad conscience, but all in all, purpose and direction.
  3. Talking about the past is like a cat’s trying to explain climbing down a ladder.
  4. Poetry is not the record of an event: it is an event.
  5. Most poetry is very formal, but when a modern poet is formal he gets more attention for it than old poets did.

Robert Lowell was an American poet. He is generally considered to be among the greatest American poets of the twentieth century. He also corresponded with many remarkable writers and thinkers, including Elizabeth Bishop, Ezra Pound, Hannah Arendt, William Carlos Williams, T. S. Eliot, and Robert Frost. These are collected in The Letters of Robert Lowell. His watershed poetry collection, Life Studies changed the landscape of modern poetry. It received the National Book Award for Poetry in 1960.

Source for image: Elsa Dorfman, CC BY-SA 3.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons

 by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 1st March 2018