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“A Coin for a Closed Eye”: Pound’s Influence on Wright’s “Appalachian Book of the Dead”

“A Coin for a Closed Eye”: Pound’s Influence on Wright’s “Appalachian Book of the Dead” "A Coin for a Closed Eye": Pound's Influence on Wright's "Appalachian Book of the Dead" By Joe Moffett Despite being one of the most decorated southern writers of his generation -- having received the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, the Pen Translation Prize, and the Griffin Poetry Award -- and having written extensively about the South -- particularly eastern Tennessee, western North Carolina, and the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia -- Charles Wright has repeatedly commented that while he identifies with the South, he also hopes to be more than "merely a Southern poet" (Halflife 159). Part of the conflict Wright experiences with the label "southern poet" might be seen to stem from the non-southern influences that punctuate his work. By now the origins of Wright's writing career are familiar to his readers. While he was serving in the U.S. Army in March 1959, stationed in Italy, a friend suggested that he read Ezra Pound's " `Blandula, Tenulla, Vagula' " and visit the location the poem commemorates: the purported site of Catullus's villa in Sirmione, on Lake Garda. Wright claims his "life was changed forever" through this experience (60), and he refers to the event frequently in http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Southern Literary Journal University of North Carolina Press

“A Coin for a Closed Eye”: Pound’s Influence on Wright’s “Appalachian Book of the Dead”

The Southern Literary Journal , Volume 44 (1) – Feb 17, 2011

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Publisher
University of North Carolina Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 the Southern Literary Journal and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Department of English .
ISSN
1534-1461
Publisher site
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Abstract

"A Coin for a Closed Eye": Pound's Influence on Wright's "Appalachian Book of the Dead" By Joe Moffett Despite being one of the most decorated southern writers of his generation -- having received the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, the Pen Translation Prize, and the Griffin Poetry Award -- and having written extensively about the South -- particularly eastern Tennessee, western North Carolina, and the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia -- Charles Wright has repeatedly commented that while he identifies with the South, he also hopes to be more than "merely a Southern poet" (Halflife 159). Part of the conflict Wright experiences with the label "southern poet" might be seen to stem from the non-southern influences that punctuate his work. By now the origins of Wright's writing career are familiar to his readers. While he was serving in the U.S. Army in March 1959, stationed in Italy, a friend suggested that he read Ezra Pound's " `Blandula, Tenulla, Vagula' " and visit the location the poem commemorates: the purported site of Catullus's villa in Sirmione, on Lake Garda. Wright claims his "life was changed forever" through this experience (60), and he refers to the event frequently in

Journal

The Southern Literary JournalUniversity of North Carolina Press

Published: Feb 17, 2011

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