Saturday, June 17, 2006

Crane Theory

So I finished the Clive Fischer biography of Hart Crane. As it is with Crane biographies, it was a wrenching experience, particularly toward the end when Crane's drinking--always heavy--takes on a life of its own.

But as far as biographies of Crane go, I still hold that the Paul Mariani bio, The Broken Tower, is the best read, if only for how much more time Mariani spends mulling over Crane's poems, especially The Bridge.

There was one Crane blurb (perhaps from a letter to Laura Riding, I'm not sure) that was particularly heartening:

"It is part of a poet's business to risk not only criticism--but folly--in the conquest of consciousness."

I love that. "Conquest" may be a bit strong, perhaps too militaristic for my taste, but I relate to the idea of risking folly. Risking something big in my writing. I guess because I'd rather be accused of over-indulgence than boredom.

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