Saturday, October 02, 2010

Is is just me?

Next in my reading queue is Robert Lowell's book "The Dolphin."

Does anyone else think it's weird that Robert Lowell's pet name for his wife Caroline Blackwood was "Dolphin?"

P.S. Haha, when I first wrote this, I wrote that his "Dolphin" wife's name was Elizabeth Blackwell. Her name was actually Caroline Blackwood, the wife before that was Elizabeth Hardwick, and the one before that was Jean Stafford. I can't keep track of the wives! Is it also just me that I can't keep the names of his wives straight?


At 9:40 AM, Blogger Chad Parenteau said...

I took classes and learned about Lowell with people who studied under Lowell, and I still get mixed up. I forgot Jean Stafford's name until you wrote it again, so thank you.

The Dolphin is fascinating. This book drew criticism for using letters from Hardwick verbatime. Adrienne Rich actually used the word "bull shit" in her New York Times Book Review.

At 10:30 AM, Blogger SarahJane said...

I never knew one of them. They all sound pretty waspy!

word verification: prounion

At 3:03 PM, Blogger Chad Parenteau said...

Hardwick was regarded as the "Good Wife," having gone through the most for and from Lowell. I think it was mentioned that Lowell died in the middle of wanting to go back to her.

A student claimed going to the Maine town that Lowell and Stafford lived in. They were not well regarded.

At 4:14 PM, Blogger Valerie Loveland said...

Chad, I love hearing all this stuff! I am jealous you got to take that class--it sounds wonderful!

Sarah, that word verification is hilarious.

At 3:38 PM, Blogger Chad Parenteau said...

Lowell is the only poet I know that had gossipy books written about him. Our professor (protective of Lowell's good name) told us not to survey those type of books and recommended the Hamilton biography with many reservations. So of course I read a book like Manic Power: Robert Lowell and His Circle. Quite fascinating and a quick read.


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