A Sense of Scale

“I can be glad in my death that, selfless,/ the beauty of the world goes on; and then more:/ even worldless, that beauty still.”

Until the other day, it had been almost thirty years since I read the poetry of William Bronk, whose work was recommended to me by Gilbert Sorrentino, my teacher and friend way back when I was in grad school at Stanford. I find it wonderful as ever. No one I know writes more gorgeously succinct, unsparing poems about proportion and time. (The above lines come from a 1978 chapbook by Bronk, “That Beauty Still,” that I picked up recently at a splendid place in Seattle’s Pioneer Square neighborhood, Wessel and Lieberman Booksellers.)

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