William Ellery Leonard

(1876-1944 / United States)

William Ellery Leonard
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William Ellery Leonard (January 25, 1876, in Plainfield, New Jersey – May 22, 1944, in Madison, Wisconsin) was an American poet and literary scholar.

From 1906 until the end of his life, Leonard taught at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, being an assistant professor of English. Among his prominent students were literary critic Leslie Fiedler and poet Clara Leiser, the latter an outspoken opponent of Nazism.

Over his career Leonard wrote numerous volumes of poetry, the first of which was Sonnets and Poems, a collection regarded as showing emotional intensity as well as psychological depth. He is most remembered, however, for Two Lives, a cycle of 250 sonnets telling ... more »

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Best Poem of William Ellery Leonard

Indian Summer

(After completing a book for one now dead)

   (O Earth-and-Autumn of the Setting Sun,
   She is not by, to know my task is done.)
In the brown grasses slanting with the wind,
Lone as a lad whose dog's no longer near,
Lone as a mother whose only child has sinned,
Lone on the loved hill . . . and below me here
The thistle-down in tremulous atmosphere
Along red clusters of the sumach streams;
The shrivelled stalks of golden-rod are sere,
And crisp and white their flashing old racemes.
(. . . forever . . . forever . . . ...

Read the full of Indian Summer

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