By (author) Eshelman, William R.; By (author) Everson, William; By (author) Powell, Lawrence Clark
An uninhibited human document, this book reveals the inner workings of two very different minds struggling to meet the high standards of authorship they had set for themselves. Each served as a mentor to the other. Everson, known later as Brother Antoninus, a poet of the Beat Generation, comments trenchantly on Powell's novels (not published until the late 1970s) and Powell persuades Everson to reconsider words and images in his poems and give them titles. The letters include many insights on music as the two writers grow and develop emotionally and intellectually. Robinson Jeffers is the leitmotif for the book: Powell had written the first critical study of the poet and Jeffer's poems inspired Everson. Other writers appear-M.F.K. Fisher, Theodore Dreiser, Robert Duncan, Kenneth Rexroth, Henry Miller, and Archibald MacLeish, to name a few. Also sculptors Gordon Newell and Clayton James; painters Morris Graves amd Dillwyn Parrish; publishers James Laughlin and Ward Richie. Everson's draft board sent him to a conscientious objectors camp i Oregon, where he founded The Fine Arts at Waldport. The enforced separation of his internment, 1943-46, led to the dissolution of his marriage.
Powell's unprecedented leap from junior librarian at UCLA to university librarian took place during these years, and his progress as a writer of columns, book reviews, and books is revealed.