Walt Whitman was considered a mathematical hog, Eliot incomprehensible and Langston Hughes was told his poems were 'trash': there's plenty to be learned from the savage criticism delivered to the poetic greats.
You don't have to look far to find hope in a book. These authors have lent their words to the power of optimism.
She was a notorious recluse who barely published a word in her lifetime, so a new TV drama reimagining Dickinson as an outgoing ‘millennial hero’ is sure to make poetry snobs scoff. But take a closer look at her work, argues John Self, and the idea is not as ridiculous as it first seems.
Emily Dickinson (1830-1866) lived all her life in Amherst, Massachusetts. A handful of her poems came out in her lifetime, with most only published in the 1890s.
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