Sunday, July 12, 2009

Deeper Into Blackmur

From an interview with Pauline Kael:

S: Did you read people like Shaw or Lionel Trilling or R.P. Blackmur with pleasure?

PK: Oh, sure, I read them all. I read Blackmur with a great deal of pleasure. I probably identified with him [more] than with any other critic. I can't explain that to you now, but Blackmur, when I first read him, just struck some chord with me, and I read all the authors he talked about.

I was living with a young poet named Robert Horan at that time. And we were reading Blackmur together and being excited about him. …

You make discoveries in the arts with other people. Robert Duncan was a very good friend of mine, and we explored a lot of things together. We had our biggest talkfests in the late '30s. Later, when we were on different sides of the country, we would write letters to each other. We would read the same books and exchange impressions and ideas. And then we would get together somewhere and talk for forty-eight hours straight. (Laughs)