Louise Bogan

(August 11, 1897 – February 4, 1970 / Maine)

Louise Bogan
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Born in Livermore Falls, Maine, in 1897. She attended Boston Girls' Latin School and spent one year at Boston University. She married in 1916 and was widowed in 1920. In 1925, she married her second husband, the poet Raymond Holden, whom she divorced in 1937. Her poems were published in the New Republic, the Nation, Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, Scribner's and Atlantic Monthly. For thirty-eight years, she reviewed poetry for The New Yorker.

Bogan found the confessional poetry of Robert Lowell and John Berryman distasteful and self-indulgent. With the poets whose work she admired, however, such as Theodore Roethke, she was extremely supportive and encouraging. She was reclusive and... more »

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  • ''Because language is the carrier of ideas, it is easy to believe that it should be very little else than such a carrier.''
    Louise Bogan (1897-1970), U.S. poet, critic. "A Revolution in European Poetry," (written 1941), published in A Poet's Alphabet (1970).
  • ''But childhood prolonged, cannot remain a fairyland. It becomes a hell.''
    Louise Bogan (1897-1970), U.S. poet and critic. repr. In Selected Criticism: Poetry and Prose (1955). "Childhood's False Eden," (1940). Referring ...
  • ''The intellectual is a middle-class product; if he is not born into the class he must soon insert himself into it, in order to exist. He is the fine nervous flower of the bourgeoisie.''
    Louise Bogan (1897-1970), U.S. poet, critic. "Some Notes on Popular and Unpopular Art," (written 1943), published in Selected Criticism: Poetry and Pr...
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Comments about Louise Bogan

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  • Oone Tattered Oone Tattered (4/8/2014 5:39:00 AM)

    Last Hill in a Vista, I enjoyed this poem about nature and may come to read more of this ladies work,

  • Babyjoram Benson (5/18/2009 5:57:00 AM)

    My name is Miss favor am 24yr old. I saw your profile today at www.poemhunter.com
    and it really acttract me alot i believe that you are the man i
    have been looking for to share my love; How is your health? i hope all is well
    with you. I believe that we can move from here; but remember that distance; age
    and colour dose not matter what matters is the true love and understanding; in
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    me with this mail address for further introduction.
    Bye hopeing to hear from you soonest


  • Joe Distefano (8/22/2006 8:13:00 AM)

    Re Louise Bogan: Mary Gordon, in her essay 'Getting There from Here' (republished in Gordon's 1991 book 'Good Boys and Dead Girls and Other Essays' quotes a Gordon poem, 'Saint Christopher', in its entirety. A quick online search appears to show that a manuscript of this poem is included in a list of Bogan's papers maintained at Georgetown University. But the poem does not appear to be in Poemhunter's 'All Poems' list for Bogan. Can you add it? Did Bogan write other poems about saints?
    Thanks, Joseph N. DiStefano, Philadelphia distefano251@hotmail.com

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Best Poem of Louise Bogan

Song For The Last Act

Now that I have your face by heart, I look
Less at its features than its darkening frame
Where quince and melon, yellow as young flame,
Lie with quilled dahlias and the shepherd's crook.
Beyond, a garden, There, in insolent ease
The lead and marble figures watch the show
Of yet another summer loath to go
Although the scythes hang in the apple trees.

Now that I have your face by heart, I look.

Now that I have your voice by heart, I read
In the black chords upon a dulling page
Music that is not meant for music's cage,
Whose emblems mix with words that ...

Read the full of Song For The Last Act

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