Robert Lowell And His Confessional Poetry English Literature Essay

Robert Lowell is known as one of the most fecund and celebrated American poets of the twentieth century. He was the sixthA Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of CongressA and won theA Pulitzer PrizeA in both 1947 and 1974 and theA National Book AwardA in 1960. Robert Lowell is besides most notably the laminitis of the Confessional Poetry motion. Confessional poetryA emphasizes the confidant, uncomplimentary information about inside informations of the poet ‘s personal life, such as in verse form about mental unwellness and relationships. It is clear that Robert Lowell began to develop his thought of Confessional poesy whilst composing his earlier verse forms and used honestness and humbleness as a trait while composing subsequently in his life. His honestness and humbleness played major functions in his positive response across literary circles.

A good illustration of Robert Lowell ‘s earlier usage of Confessional poesy was in his verse form “ My Last Afternoon with Uncle Devereux Winslow ” . He wrote, “ I cowered in panic. I was n’t a kid at all- unobserved and all-seeing, I was Agrippina in the Golden House of Nero… . Near me was the white measuring-door my Grandfather had penciled with my Uncle ‘s highs. In 1911, he had stopped turning at merely six pess. ” Robert Lowell ‘s work grew from his ain sadness and the societal, political, and ideological motions in the U.S. during the Post World War II decennaries. His hate of his life led to personal contemplation which in bend was rather apparent in his poesy. When he uses expressions like “ I cowered in panic ” and “ I was Agrippa in the Golden House of Nero ” it is clear that he is speaking from personal experience and giving the reader an penetration into his life that no 1 would be able to anticipate. Agrippa was an ancient Roman solon and general. The Golden House of Nero was a big Villa in Rome built by Nero. Agrippa came long before the Golden House of Nero was erected, therefore doing him non “ tantrum in ” with the Gold House.

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Robert Lowell is besides known for his humbleness and self-belittlement in his Hagiographas. A perfect illustration is in his verse form “ Epilogue ” . He writes, “ Those blessed constructions, secret plan and rhyme/ why are they no aid to me now/I want to make/something imagined, non recalled? /I hear the noise of my ain voice: ” Lowell is afraid that his poesy of memory may miss artistic grace. He is worried that his memories and personal representation in his poesy is non good plenty to fulfill his desirable literary circles. The fact is, he won many awards in his clip for his artistic creativeness. When he says, “ I want to do something imagined, non recalled ” , this lays a blunt image in our head. He does n’t desire to compose something that he can be wholly originative with, yet he seems to pull all of his creativeness from personal experience. This personal experience seems to impact him and he writes about it.

Lowell besides asserts a new sort of ego contemplation in his poesy. Alternatively of merely composing about his ailments about himself or his relationships, he tends to compose about his jobs with his ain authorship. In his verse form “ Beyond the Alps ” , he wrote, “ Life changed to landscape. Much against my will/ I left the City of God where it belongs./ There the skirt-mad Mussolini unfurled/ the bird of Jove of Caesar. He was one of us/ merely, pure prose. I envy the conspicuous/ waste of our grandparents on their expansive tours/- long-haired Victorian sages accepted the existence, / while breezing on their trust financess through the universe ” . Lowell is siting on a train from Rome, “ the City of God, ” to Paris. This journey provides deep contemplation for Lowell as he seems to be contemplating his religion in Catholicism. It is clear that Lowell is puting a way for his ain enlightenment. He is basically stating that he is going from “ Rome to Paris ” and will seek the independency and “ conspicuous ” of the universe.

One of the most obvious utilizations of Confessional poesy is in Lowell ‘s verse form “ Waking in the Blue ‘ . This verse form explores Lowell ‘s life waking up in a mental infirmary. He writes, “ After a hearty New England breakfast, I weigh two hundred lbs this forenoon. Cock of the walk, I strut in my turtle-necked Gallic crewman ‘s New Jersey before the metal shaving mirrors, and see the rickety hereafter grow familiar in the pinched, autochthonal faces of these pedigree mental instances ” . The rubric emphasizes Lowell ‘s personal experience of rousing at a mental institution-a memory Lowell presents carefully in which he and his fellow patients are sea animals swimming in the “ agonised blue ” . When he says, “ I strut in my turtle-necked Gallic crewman ‘s New Jersey ” he is speaking about a straitjacket. This kind of witty wit about his life is apparent throughout most of his poesy. He besides says, “ autochthonal faces of these pedigree mental instances ” . He feels like an foreigner, and like he does n’t belong. This deep contemplation helps give us a solid base when comparing Lowell ‘s artistic creativeness.

Probably one of the most telling verse forms written by Robert Lowell is “ Dolphin ” . This verse form explores Lowell ‘s interior feelings that his life is whirling out of control. He writes, “ My Dolphin, you merely steer me by surprise, a confined as Racine, the adult male of trade, drawn through his labyrinth of Fe composing by the uncomparable mobile voice of Phedre. When I was troubled in head, you made for my organic structure caught in its hangman’s-knot of droping lines ” Lowell ‘s effort to convey to the reader that he feelsA that his life is falling apart is most evidenced by him stating, “ When I was troubled in head, you made for my organic structure caught in its hangman’s-knot ” . He basically is stating that when he was holding mental issues, he contemplated suicide. There are non many poets around He is able to acknowledge that he has toiled with mental problems in his life. This takes a batch of ego assurance and his poesy reflects this assurance.

In decision, Robert Lowell is most notably the laminitis of Confessional poesy because of his clever and originative use of self-reflection and humbleness in his Hagiographas which all bring together to make a fresh, new position for the reader. This all makes Robert Lowell non merely one of the most celebrated and well-known American poets, but one of the most alone and important as good.

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