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(24 October 1923 – 20 December 1997 / Ilford, Essex)

Denise Levertov
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Denise Levertov was a British-born American poet.

Biography

Born in Ilford, Essex, England, her mother, Beatrice Spooner-Jones Levertoff, was Welsh. Her father, Paul Levertoff, immigrated to England from Germany, was a Russian Hassidic Safardic Jew who became an Anglican priest. While being educated at home, Levertov showed an enthusiasm for writing from an early age. When she was five years old, she said later in life, she declared she would be a writer. At the age of 12, she sent some of her poems to T. S. Eliot, who replied with a two-page letter of encouragement. In 1940, when she was 17, Levertov published her first poem.

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Quotations

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  • ''putting his hope in certain death, lowering
    his head again to the grass.''
    Denise Levertov (b. 1923), Anglo-U.S. poet. "Ce bruit de la mer . . ....."
  • ''Let the space under the first storey be dark, let the water
    lap the stone posts, and vivid green slime glimmer
    upon them; let a boat be kept there.''
    Denise Levertov (b. 1923), Anglo-U.S. poet. "Psalm Concerning the Castle."
  • ''image
    of water, a brightness
    not gold, not silver,
    rippling
    as if with laughter.''
    Denise Levertov (b. 1923), Anglo-U.S. poet. "The Ripple."
  • That sound, everywhere about us, of the sea—
    the tree among its tresses has always heard it,
    and the horse dips his black body in the sound
    stretching his neck as if towards ...
    Denise Levertov (b. 1923), Anglo-U.S. poet. "Ce bruit de la mer . . ....."
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Comments about Denise Levertov

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  • Paul Ricard (2/19/2010 9:50:00 AM)

    i've never read anything about her before, but this morning I happened upon a poem of her's, 'Aware' which has sent my heart soaring. So beautiful! ! !

    Is there anyway that I could write to her, e-mail or regular? ? ? Please let me know, I want to thank her and tell her that I am looking forward to more readings of her poetry in the near future. Such a beautiful poem.

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