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Brett Foster

Bright Stamps

John Keats’ letters to Fanny Brawne.

Letters as a literary form—not to mention as documents between living, breathing people whose relationship they preserve—seem in decline. One easily imagines that fewer writers, blogging and maintaining their websites, busy themselves with such a quaint practice. Now they have electronic means of commenting on daily events or making announcements to a circle of acquaintances, and thus neglect the composition of what Garrison Keillor calls "a sweet gift— a piece of handmade writing, in an envelope that is not a bill." The artifact Keillor describes can hardly compare (right?) with the efficiency and portability of emailing or texting. When future literary biographers ply their trade, will these digital records be as valuable as letters are in revealing writers' lives? And even if a writer composes letters that are eventually published, I worry they are bound to be increasingly overlooked, if not yet bound for readers' or critics' dead-letter office. Our own swiftly changing habits of communication risk making us less attentive to others' missives. Sure, there is always Lord Chesterfield or Virginia Woolf or John Cheever, and the recently published correspondence of American poets Elizabeth Bishop and Robert Lowell seizes our attention; theirs are often letters about the arts of letters. Nevertheless, we need occasions and advocates for appreciating anew the best letters of the past, along with the minds and hearts still revealed there.

The Oscar-winning filmmaker Jane Campion sensed the letter's artistic value when reading mere extracts of John Keats' correspondence with Fanny Brawne in the poet Andrew Motion's biography of his great Romantic predecessor. She was "completely unprepared by how passionate and intimate the story was," she explains in an interview on the DVD of Bright Star, which she wrote and directed. Full of cinematic beauties, her film tells the story of Keats' and Brawne's first meeting as neighbors in Hampstead, in the fall of 1818—he was 23; she, 18—and the fateful relationship that followed, one of the most famous and debated in literary history. Keats was living with his brothers George, who soon would leave for America, and Tom, soon to die of tuberculosis. In fact, Tom's decline and death on December 1 overshadowed the first months of Keats' and Brawne's acquaintance. He recalled their first meeting in a later letter: "I have, believe me, not been an age in letting you take possession of me; the very first week I knew you I wrote myself your vassal; but burnt the Letter as the very next time I saw you I thought you manifested some dislike to me." This lover's brew of conflicting emotions characterizes Keats' feelings toward Brawne, as does that focus on writing; here he writes a letter about destroying an earlier letter. He described Fanny in a December 1818 letter to his brother George: "Shall I give you Miss Brawne? … she manages to make her hair look well—her nostrils are fine—though a little painful—her mouth is bad and good." He had begun to call her "Minx," not meanly but "from a penchant she has for acting stylishly."

Keats later stayed with his friend Charles Brown at nearby Wentworth Place, which we might conveniently think of as a 19th-century English version of a townhouse duplex. Fanny Brawne's widowed mother moved her family into its other half in spring 1819, the same spring that Keats composed some of his greatest poems—"La Belle Dame Sans Merci," "Ode on a Grecian Urn," and "Ode to a Nightingale." Their relationship intensified that spring, but was strained in the early summer when Keats and Brown traveled to the Isle of Wight for a time of intense writing. However awkward the departure, we must be grateful for it, for it elicited Keats' first letters to Brawne.

Their story was most clear and convincing to Campion, nearly two centuries later, when she read Keats' words— not those carefully arranged in the poetry, but those here in the letters, 37 overall. Keats wrote them during three different stretches of separation between July 1819 and his departure for Rome, for health reasons, in August 1820. Describing the impact of one of the letters—and she might be speaking of the whole collection—Campion says it feels "shockingly present, like a handhold or a kiss … fresh, intimate, irreverent, as though he was present and speaking." Keats wrote them in the moment and intended them for Brawne only, yet today they remain an enduring part of his lyrical legacy. They also express what his biographer Motion describes as the "ambiguities of love and liberty." Campion, for her part, is more inclined to see connections between Keats' and Brawne's traditional correspondence and the new media we use. "They really want to connect," she says about young people communicating digitally today. "They want to feel seen and create a sense of themselves." Common online-chat topics, including love, death, and the soul, resemble conversations with roommates, she argues. They are certainly key preoccupations in Keats' writing. He treated these high matters, and expressed himself within the shadows cast by these heights, in ways Campion loves.

The poet Stanley Plumly, in his recent "personal biography" Posthumous Keats, reflects on the literary fortunes of these particular letters, which "seem to have a public will of their own." They complicated the reputations of both lovers, and Plumly ponders the consequences of their always being exceptional, whether because of friends' reticence, the curiosity of eavesdroppers, or literary romanticizing. Keats' letters to Brawne were first published in 1878, although lately books have not acknowledged what Plumly calls their "separate life" outside Keats' general correspondence. For this reason, Bright Star: Love Letters and Poems of John Keats to Fanny Brawne is an unusually valuable book for that sometimes sigh-inducing category of "classics" volume, the movie tie-in. No cynical bone is required to see these volumes for what they typically are: well-timed product repackaging or rebranding. These occasions serve as tiny stimulus packages for publishers, who can release a literary classic with dwindling readership and tether it to a movie "event"—optimally with a glossy cover featuring attractive young Hollywood actors and an eye-catching title right from the cinema poster.

Admittedly, this is what we find with the book Bright Star, whose cover features our two characters with eyes closed and about to kiss. O look at Brawne's creamy skin! O behold the wispy hair of the poet John Keats! And caveat lector: keeping a review copy on the family coffee table may invite awkward conversation with eleven-year-old daughters. And yet in this case, the opportunity for a commercial tie-in with Campion's film led to a felicitous collection. Taking these letters together, most readers will find them entirely deserving of that restored "separate life" upon which Plumly broods.

"I do not know how elastic my spirit might be," Keats writes in his first letter to Fanny, dated 3 July 1819, "what pleasure I might have in living here and breathing and wandering as free as a stag about this beautiful Coast if the remembrance of you did not weigh so upon me." He was residing with his friend Brown (who becomes the third part of a sort of love triangle in Campion's film) on the Isle of Wight, the landscape described in the passage. He worked intensely: his verse drama Otho the Great, the poem Lamia, and initial revisions on Hyperion. Already his health was deteriorating. The tone here is common throughout the letters to Brawne—playful affection or breathless adoration, mixed with darker insinuations about his freedom and her faithfulness, his jealousy and their uncertain love. He writes below, "Ask yourself my love whether you are not very cruel to have so entrammelled me, so destroyed my freedom." This coyly conventional language of wounded lover and cruel beloved gives way to more passionate expression: "write the softest words and kiss them that I may at least touch my lips where yours have been …. For myself I know not how to express my devotion to so fair a form: I want a brighter word than bright, a fairer word than fair." Yet even in this first letter, pessimism and jealousy creep in: "In case of the worst that can happen, I shall still love you—but what hatred shall I have for another!" Keats constantly shifts between verbally sounding the depths of love and lamenting it, with increasing vehemence, as a doomed thing, futile and tormenting.

This ambivalence is most recognizable in an essential Keatsian pairing: "I have two luxuries to brood over in my walks, your Loveliness and the hour of my death." This twin preoccupation reemerges throughout the letters ("I should like to cast the die for love or death") and is familiar from his verses. By August 1819, Keats was in Winchester, a cathedral city. He anticipated reading Brawne's letters "during the service up and down the Aisle." Another note, a "flint-worded Letter" for which he apologizes, is far cooler in tone, likely because his growing devotion made him nervous: "a few more moments' thought of you would uncrystallize and dissolve me." Shortly he returned to London but resisted visiting Fanny in Hampstead, explaining that "it is not paying a visit, but venturing into a fire." But meet they did on October 10, and soon the dazzled Keats returned to Wentworth Place. The pair now lived in two sides of the same house, sharing family meals and walks across the heath amid the bluebells and daffodils. Keats gave Brawne a garnet ring. Her mother clearly regretted the engagement, hoping it would "go off." She saw no future for them, but generally the Brawnes showed great affection for the poet. The prior Christmas spent together, which Fanny in a letter to Keats' sister remembered as the "happiest day I had ever then spent," becomes one of the most charming scenes in Campion's film.

This happiness, alas, did not last. In February 1820 Keats fell ill, and a large lung hemorrhage nearly killed him. His convalescence caused the paradoxical circumstances of the next set of letters to Brawne. Worried that her visits with Keats would emotionally agitate and further weaken him, doctors and friends ensured that the couple felt alone together—occupying the same home but kept separated. Ironically, it was the separation that agitated Keats: "You must come and see me frequently," he implores, sneakily advising her to wait till neither Brown nor her mother was present. Eventually he moved to the front parlor, and looked for Brawne at the window. He also requested "Good night" notes, to hold or to place beneath his pillow. "Did you hear the Thrush singing over the field?" he asks. Sometimes he is in high spirits, supremely complimenting Brawne or, more cheekily, wondering what Rousseau or Shakespeare would make of their correspondence. More frequently, though, the letters grow surly or despairing. He is too weak to resume his poetry, and hopes for their relationship soon begin to mock him. "I cannot say forget me, but I would mention that there are impossibilities in the world," he writes with a rarer stoic note; more often he frets at thoughts of Brawne straying or her love diminishing.

These worries become acute in the third and final set of letters, the last four Keats addressed to Brawne. His condition worsened in June, and financial setbacks required him to relocate to his friend Leigh Hunt's. Around July 1, his second book was published. It was destined to be one of the single greatest poetry volumes in English literature. His doctors soon deemed a sojourn in Italy necessary if the patient were to survive the coming winter. His friends graciously raised the funds, but Keats grew increasingly anguished and paranoid at the prospect of departure—from Fanny, from England, and from this life. In a gentler moment he reports to Brawne that he has copied "the most beautiful passages in Spenser" for her, "however small a pleasure." Elsewhere, he sounds like a self-pitying prosecutor: "How have you pass'd this month? Who have you smil'd with?" Just as quickly he expresses remorse, or turns to more solemn matters: "I long to believe in immortality. I shall never be able to bid you an entire farewell." The final letter is the most painful. He seems to despise her health, and imagines her conspiring with the "brute world" and even his friends, with their "indecencies." His state begins to resemble one described in Hyperion: "As with us mortal men, the laden heart / Is persecuted more, and fever'd more[.]"

Just before his departure for Italy, Keats returned to Wentworth Place, where Mrs. Brawne permitted him to stay with them. Hers was courageous allowance, considering the premarital scandal it invited. We have no letters dating from this last residence there, and once he was sailing from England and settling in Naples and Rome, he could no longer bear to write Fanny. Perhaps she had to endure rereading those prior sentences. "I wish you could infuse a little confidence in human nature into my heart," he writes in that final letter.

Campion's film takes advantage of freely narrating Keats' and Brawne's last, painful days together. Fanny, in a standout performance by the Australian actor Abbie Cornish, appears to us as both utterly devastated and ennobled in defiance, however unchanged the outcome. "Perhaps it is for the best," someone tells her, clumsily comforting. "Whose best?" she snaps back. Coming to terms with her loss, she weeps and asks her lover, "Is there another life? Shall I awake and find all this a dream? There must be: we cannot be created for this suffering." Campion, with the deftness of an enchanted director, found these lines in a September 1820 letter to Charles Brown, in which Keats reports that some of Brawne's phrases still "ring in my ears." The Keats we find here is beyond the unpleasant jealousy and convulsions seen earlier; he is living a "posthumous" existence, as he calls it, and sounds more resigned, more tender: "for my sake you would be a friend to Miss Brawne when I am dead. You think she has many faults—but, for my sake, think she has none." For Keats, "death is the great divorcer forever," but he still sought ways to assist her.

As I walked and debriefed in a group after seeing Bright Star for the first time, the word that came to mind was "languorous," which immediately demanded explanation. Such a word sounds pejorative today, but I didn't intend it so. Maybe I meant it more as Keats himself used it, in a poem included in this collection: "Bright eyes, accomplished shape, and languorous waist!" As Campion says in an interview, "I try not to hurry them up and to actually enjoy the time it takes for them to get close." The film's pace, then, is unusually slow but satisfying, from the pair's spirited first meeting (Keats spoke of their having a "tiff now and then") to their more difficult final days as lovers, together and apart.

The strongest presence here is Cornish as Brawne, whom Campion expressly wished to make the center of her film. Andrew Motion describes the historical Fanny Brawne as "unformed, frisky, and quick-tongued," but Cornish presents us with a young woman far beyond that description. Avoiding the extremes of the twit or the sensitive, she creates a heroine who is attractive in her down-to-earth health: she is roughly vivacious, comfortable in her skin in ways that Keats, played by a thin, darkly dressed Ben Whishaw, can never match. A young man tubercular even before he falls ill, he oscillates between fragile, retiring sensitivity and fierce intelligence.

Cornish's personality is more consistent for being more assured—she is always genuine and interesting, and like her historical model, she shows glimpses of being far more accomplished, as a person and in her pursuits, than was often assumed. (Keats' friends, and especially Brown in the film, played by a sometimes pompous, sometimes treacly Paul Schneider, dismissed Fanny as a "poor Idle thing.") Conversely, as W. Jackson Bate argues in his Pulitzer-winning biography, the pair may have clicked in part because Keats, determined as he was to concentrate on poetry, was likely impressed by her concentration and seriousness with fashion designs and sewing. He doubtless noticed as well her interest in languages and dancing, although he sometimes insinuated that her interests betrayed the trumperies of the coquette, vapid if oh so fashionable.

Keats, it must be said, was not the most comfortable with or genial toward women. In 1820, he spoke in a letter to Brown of the "offence that ladies take at me," although he was certain that "I have said nothing in a spirit to displease any woman I would care to please." How arch, that final qualifying clause! No, he was far more in step with his immediate friends (who in truth he could also grow sick of), his orphaned brothers, and—not insignificantly—those male heroes the "English Poets," whose company he aspired to join. He constantly carried volumes of Shakespeare with him, and often wrote under a portrait of his great "Presider." Once, visiting Canterbury, he hoped the "Remembrance of Chaucer" would set him "forward like a Billiard-Ball." Keats underlined anti-marriage statements in his copy of The Anatomy of Melancholy ("thou art undone"), yet he could also write, in the fall of 1819, "My sweet Fanny, will your heart never change? My love, will it? I have no limit now to my love …. I could die for you. My Creed is love and you are its only tenet."

Although the film's sympathy and point of view is with Brawne, Campion never wavers in her devotion to Keats as a writer. If he is less compelling as a character, the real Keats' language fully inhabits the movie. We hear Whishaw recite poems at various moments, or hear them in voiceover, and visually Campion especially valorizes Keats' letters. One wet page is slapped against a window pane, inviting the audience to read it. Another stands out with its red wax seal, and repeatedly we see glimpses of the poet's familiar script. This may seem like overstatement, to say that Keats' script is a studied, familiar thing, but it is indeed true—see Stephen Hebron's John Keats: A Poet and His Manuscripts or Billy Collins' whimsical poem "Keats's Handwriting": "you can feel the quick jitter of writing, / the animal scratching of the nib, / even the blood beating in the temples."

What's more, screenwriter Campion has incorporated many other passages from Keats' letters, many addressed to Fanny but some to others as well. Sometimes these quotations feel like awkwardly introduced compulsions on Campion's part, as when Keats nonchalantly fires off some of his most famous aesthetic pronouncements while in a "poetry tutorial" with Brawne. Generally, however, they add an air of authentic Georgian English to the dialogue. Campion comes off as a director concerned not only with paying greater homage to Fanny Brawne than is traditional (she was initially condemned for tormenting or ruining Keats) but also with celebrating the poet's charged language and his masterful poems themselves. "The movie made me think about taking a poetry class," said Quentin Tarantino, quoted in one review. High praise from the creator of Reservoir Dogs and Inglourious Basterds (though that workshop might be awfully violent).

In this way, authors' letters can serve as emissaries for their greater, more creative work. I similarly remember in college discovering James Agee's letters to Father Flye, and that at once inquisitive and abashed feeling at hearing—or better, overhearing—Agee's impassioned, sometimes petulant outbursts. How weirdly transparent (I thought) were the talented, tormented Agee's thoughts on life, faith, and writing, all written amid his stumbles toward maturity. He was working toward a place of peace if not of wisdom exactly. It is hard to imagine a Big American Writer such as James Agee settling for emails or tweets. Thankfully we do not have to settle for anything less than the letter, that endangered genre, to which he turned whenever he shared thoughts with his mentor Flye. The letter is an intimate literary form (and yes, that paradox is noted) that can be both rhetorically expansive like an essay and sociably revealing. The direct address that defines any letter can range from accusatory to insouciant, festering to confessional. I was enthralled, although Agee's letters are not to everyone's taste. A thoughtful college friend once perused my copy of Agee, put the book down, and quietly said, "Honestly, I wish I could read a volume of Father Flye's letters to him."

We suffer from the same one-sidedness with the Keats-Brawne correspondence. His letters were lovingly kept and protected: they were not published till 1878, nearly fifteen years after her death, and yet still they scandalized some. Matthew Arnold thought that Keats' effusions, sometimes tender and sometimes terrible but always with passionate abandon, contained "something underbred and ignoble … without the training which teaches us that we must put some constraint upon our feelings and upon the expression of them." I, for one, am grateful that the book currently under review was not full of Matthew Arnold's letters, although I would be very keen to overhear Brawne's voice. But her letters to him? Gone forever. Keats likely burned many before leaving England for Italy, and the final letters she sent to Rome were buried with him in the Protestant Cemetery there. At least one, we are told by his travel companion Joseph Severn, he could not bring himself to open. Considering that he died of tuberculosis, some letters may have been destroyed, along with Keats' other possessions, in order to reduce the disease's spread. A few of Brawne's letters to Keats' sister were published in 1937, and only then did their tone, full of typical candor but also humane, help to shift critics' generally negative appraisal of her. Keats had asked that she write to his sister after he was gone. Campion does an admirable job of re-creating, if never truly recovering, this longed-for voice. (Another effort is Jude Morgan's 2004 historical novel Passion; "I remember that eagerness," its Brawne thinks, recalling her first meeting with the quick-eyed poet.)

That said, if we must accept the survival of only half of a conversation, we can do no better than this sporadic and at times furious collection by Keats, whose letters generally T. S. Eliot declared the "most notable and most important ever written by any English poet." A few years ago Andrs Rodriguez argued in The Book of the Heart: The Poetics, Letters, and Life of John Keats that the poet's letters should be considered as fundamental to his reputation as any lyrical masterpiece. Readers interested in a broader selection of Keats' letters should consult Robert Gittings' standard edition, reprinted last year in the Oxford World's Classics series. Generally his letters are cherished for their lively reportage and now classic aesthetic pronouncements, and, of course, for their romantic (small 'r'), sometimes frantic expressions. Keats' circumstances and disposition precluded his being Brawne's ideal lover: in one letter from Wentworth Place, he wishes to "run round and surprise you with a knock at the door," but he did not. (Here, and often in the film, the lovers' proximity becomes maddening.) "I fear I am too prudent for a dying kind of Lover," he admits. Yet his best words must have made up for a great deal, providing both inspiration and consolation. In the film, Brawne's reading of Keats' letters marks the emotional heights of their relationship. She is most ecstatic then because he had a singular knack for saying beautiful things beautifully, as much in these personal notes as in odes or sonnets.

A very selected grouping of Keats' poems fills out the rest of this small book, paired with his letters to Fanny. Knowing readers must begrudge the subtitle ("Love Letters and Poems … to Fanny Brawne"), because even if we accept the most generous "Brawne-as-Muse" construct, poems remain here that do not directly involve her, including major odes and narrative poems. On the other hand, at least one "Song" ("Hush, hush! tread softly!"), excluded from this gathering, participated intensely in their relationship; Brawne copied it out within a month of Keats' writing it. More egregious and downright inexplicable absences in this selection include the famous sonnet "When I have fears that I may cease to be" and "Ode to a Nightingale." The first poem has traditionally been associated with Brawne ("fair creature of an hour"), and the film devotes screen time to both. Whishaw as Keats recites the sonnet at the table, his eyes darting back and forth as he recalls the opening lines. In a coy move, Campion has him forget the rest, and break off. Later we see the composition of "Nightingale" and hear its famous lines at the end. "To Autumn" is also missed here, since that late masterpiece is no less pertinent than other choices.

The selection opens with the title sonnet, "Bright star, would I were steadfast as thou art." Often it is described as addressed to Brawne, and indeed throughout the letters Keats praises her brightness, concluding one letter with "Yours ever, fair Star." Still, reading the poem carefully will suggest otherwise: Keats' persona's apostrophe to the star seems clear enough. It is not used in this instance as an affectionate nickname, as in the letter; on the contrary, the star itself sets in motion a machinery of negative comparisons. The first half of the sonnet rejects any number of extreme cases of—how to say it?-—sidereal continuousness. The speaker realizes he cannot match that inhuman constancy, "No—yet still steadfast, still unchangeable, / Pillowed upon my fair love's ripening breast, / To feel for ever its soft swell and fall, / Awake for ever in a sweet unrest." Campion has taken heat from film and literary critics such as David Denby and Christopher Ricks for making these lines literal in her film: Whishaw recites them while lying on Cornish's chest. Keats' original lines were actually slightly more racy: "Cheek-pillow'd on my Love's white ripening breast / To touch for ever its warm sink and swell." The specificity of the cheek and the more active verb "touch" press the matter, so to speak. A noticeable number of poems feature similar imagery, as if Keats had something on his mind. The poem dramatizes that same pairing of love and death, and certainly captures a tension of feeling found in the letters: a deep wish for repose and stasis during a contented moment mixed with what may be best called erotic alertness. If anywhere, Brawne may be present in the pronoun in the following line's phrase, "her tender-taken breath," and in 1819 she transcribed the poem into a copy of Dante that Keats had given her. Yet we should be careful not to reduce this fine sonnet to mere biographical record. When asked if Brawne is the bright star or the "her," or if it's her breathing rendered here, or if she has nothing to do with the poem, most poetry lovers will answer simply, yes.

But this reader forgave a host of editorial sins of exclusion upon finding as the final poem here a remarkable seven-and-a-half lines, which Keats scrawled in the margin of an in-progress satirical poem—an inspired choice, by itself worth the cost of the book:

This living hand, now warm and capable
Of earnest grasping, would, if it were cold
And in the icy silence of the tomb,
So haunt thy days and chill thy dreaming nights
That thou would wish thine own heart dry of blood
So in my veins red life may stream again,
And thou be conscience-calmed—see here it is—
I hold it towards you.

Where to begin? The conjuration-act of focusing on the hand, held out in the poem's present, fuels the lyrical drama here. And it deepens considerably as the hand grows cold, but is no less vivid despite that shift of mood. However conditional the grammar, the outcome nevertheless feels fated, if not already occurring. The hand is instantly cold and entombed, and it will haunt you! The "you" will act and be helpless to do otherwise, not only in order to reanimate the speaker but also to become, in a phrase as surprising as it is prickly and suggestive, "conscience-calmed." I have always admired the incredible force of the sentence structure ("This hand … would … if … so haunt … that thou … so … and thou"), yet its careful argumentation is abolished forever by the emphatic, possibly desperate reintroduction of the hand, and its enigmatic gesture "toward you."

If read closely, the letters give clues to the genesis of this poem. In a hostile moment, Keats accuses Brawne of something only intimated elsewhere—flirting with Charles Brown, his close friend. It is among the ugliest moments for Keats the lover and letter-writer, although in the film Campion's Keats displays some welcomed energy and anger during an awkward standoff among these three. "When you were in the habit of flirting with Brown you would have left off," Keats writes, now shifting to the mood and word choices of the poem, "could your own heart have felt one half of one pang mine did." Shortly Keats states bluntly the envy or resentment only lurking in the poem, with an added nasty edge of condescension: "You do not feel as I do—you do not know what it is to love—one day you may—your time is not come." One can hear an echo at the very end, too, when he says, huffing and puffing, "do not write unless you can do it with a crystal conscience."

It must finally be said that one letter, arguably Keats' very last one to Brawne if we use the term loosely, has also been excluded from this volume. Readers shall be the judge. "I dare not fix my Mind upon Fanny," Keats wrote to Mrs. Brawne on October 24, 1820, while his ship was quarantined off the Bay of Naples. A week later he told Brown that to see her handwriting would break his heart. On February 23, 1821, after a few more months of sickness and misery in Rome, he died. Brown informed the Brawnes, back in Hampstead, noting that Fanny "has shown a firmness of mind which I little expected from one so young." (Campion imagines it otherwise.) But back to that letter to Mrs. Brawne. As if no longer able to withstand his self-imposed restriction, Keats added at the bottom a dashed-off postscript to another recipient—"Good bye Fanny! god bless you." It may not constitute a thirty-eighth letter to Brawne, but as far as it goes, however brief, however plain, those six words represent the loveliest epistolary writing this poet ever composed.

Brett Foster's writing has lately appeared in Image, Kenyon Review, Poetry East, and Raritan, and his first poetry collection will be published by Northwestern University Press early in 2011. He is an associate professor of English at Wheaton College.

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