John Gould Fletcher (January 3, 1886 – May 10, 1950) was an Imagist poet (the first Southern poet to win the Pulitzer Prize), author and authority on modern painting.He was born in Little Rock, Arkansas, to a socially prominent family. After attending Phillips Academy, Andover Fletcher went on to Harvard University from 1903 to 1907, when he dropped out shortly after his father's death.
Fletcher lived in England for a large portion of his life. While in Europe he associated with Amy Lowell, Ezra Pound, and other Imagist poets; he was one of the six Imagists who adopted the name and stuck to it until their aims were achieved.Fletcher resumed a liaison with Florence Emily "Daisy" Arbuthnot (née Goold) at her house in Kent. She had been married to Malcolm Arbuthnot and Fletcher's adultery with her was the grounds for the divorce. The couple married on July 5, 1916. The marriage produced no children, but Arbuthnot's son and daughter from her previous marriage lived with the couple, who later divorced.
On January 18, 1936, Fletcher married a noted author of children's books, Charlie May Simon. The two of them built "Johnswood", a residence on the bluffs of the Arkansas River, then outside Little Rock. They traveled frequently to New York for the intellectual stimulation, and to the American West and South for the climate, after Fletcher developed chronic arthritis.
Fletcher suffered from depression, and on May 10, 1950, committed suicideby drowning himself in a pond near his home in Little Rock, Arkansas. Fletcher is buried at historic Mount Holly Cemetery in Little Rock. A branch of the Central Arkansas Library System is named in his honor.
In 1913 Ezra Pound in his New Freewoman review commended Fletcher for the individuality of rhythm in his first volume of poems.Those early works include Irradiations: Sand and Spray (1915), and Goblins and Pagodas (1916). Amy Lowell said of him, "No one is more absolute master of the rhythm of verse libre". Fletcher invented the term 'polyphonic prose' to describe some poetic experiments of Amy Lowell, a form he experimented with in Goblins & Pagodas. In later poetic works Fletcher returned to more traditional forms. These include The Black Rock (1928), Selected Poems (1938), for which he won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1939, "South Star" published by Macmillan (1941), and The Burning Mountain (1946). Fletcher later moved back to Arkansas to reconnect with his roots. The subject of his works turned increasingly towards Southern issues and traditionalism.
In the late 1920s and 1930s Fletcher was active with a group of Southern writers and poets known as the Southern Agrarians. This group published the classic Agrarian manifesto I'll Take My Stand, a collection of essays rejecting Modernity and Industrialism. In 1937 he wrote his autobiography, Life is My Song, and in 1947 he published Arkansas, a history of his home state.
Johnswood, his Little Rock home, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Free verse is an open form of poetry which in its modern form arose through the French vers libre form. It does not use consistent metre patterns, rhyme, or any musical pattern. It thus tends to follow the rhythm of natural speech.
Imagism was a movement in early-20th-century Anglo-American poetry that favored precision of imagery and clear, sharp language. It has been described as the most influential movement in English poetry since the Pre-Raphaelites. As a poetic style it gave modernism its start in the early 20th century, and is considered to be the first organized modernist literary movement in the English language. Imagism is sometimes viewed as "a succession of creative moments" rather than a continuous or sustained period of development. René Taupin remarked that "it is more accurate to consider Imagism not as a doctrine, nor even as a poetic school, but as the association of a few poets who were for a certain time in agreement on a small number of important principles".
Amy Lawrence Lowell was an American poet of the imagist school from Brookline, Massachusetts. She posthumously won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1926.
Modernist poetry in English started in the early years of the 20th century with the appearance of the Imagists. In common with many other modernists, these poets wrote in reaction to the perceived excesses of Victorian poetry, with its emphasis on traditional formalism and ornate diction. In many respects, their criticism echoes what William Wordsworth wrote in Preface to Lyrical Ballads to instigate the Romantic movement in British poetry over a century earlier, criticising the gauche and pompous school which then pervaded, and seeking to bring poetry to the layman.
"In A Station of the Metro" is an Imagist poem by Ezra Pound published in 1913 in the literary magazine Poetry. In the poem, Pound describes a moment in the underground metro station in Paris in 1912; Pound suggested that the faces of the individuals in the metro were best put into a poem not with a description but with an "equation". Because of the treatment of the subject's appearance by way of the poem's own visuality, it is considered a quintessential Imagist text.
Thomas Ernest Hulme was an English critic and poet who, through his writings on art, literature and politics, had a notable influence upon modernism. He was an aesthetic philosopher and the 'father of imagism'.
Frank Stuart Flint was an English poet and translator who was a prominent member of the Imagist group. Ford Madox Ford called him "one of the greatest men and one of the beautiful spirits of the country".
Skipwith Cannell (1887–1957) was an American poet associated with the Imagist group. His surname is pronounced with the accent on the second syllable. He was a friend of William Carlos Williams, and like Ezra Pound he came from Philadelphia. Cannell studied at the University of Virginia and was enthusiastic about the work of Edgar Allan Poe and the free verse of The King James Version of The Bible. He was briefly married to Kathleen Eaton Cannell, who was generally known as 'Kitty'.
Dorothy Kathleen May Livesay, was a Canadian poet who twice won the Governor General's Award in the 1940s, and was "senior woman writer in Canada" during the 1970s and 1980s.
Stanley Miller Williams was an American contemporary poet, as well as a translator and editor. He produced over 25 books and won several awards for his poetry. His accomplishments were chronicled in Arkansas Biography. He is perhaps best known for reading a poem at the second inauguration of Bill Clinton. One of his best-known poems is "The Shrinking Lonesome Sestina."
Des Imagistes: An Anthology, edited by Ezra Pound and published in 1914, was the first anthology of the Imagism movement. It was published in The Glebe in February 1914, and later that year as a book by Charles and Albert Boni in New York, and Harold Monro's Poetry Bookshop in London.
Malcolm Arbuthnot was a pictorialist photographer and artist.
Nationality words link to articles with information on the nation's poetry or literature.
Louise Morey Bowman was a Canadian poet.
Edward Augustine Storer (1880–1944) was an English writer, translator and poet.
In poetry, cadence describes the fall in pitch of the intonation of the voice, and its modulated inflection with the rise and fall of its sound.
Kim Jong-gil was an early-modern South Korean poet.
Max Michelson (1880–1953) was an American, imagist poet closely associated with Harriet Monroe and Poetry magazine.
Johnswood is a historic house at 10314 Cantrell Road in Little Rock, Arkansas. It is a single-story structure, its main section built out of sandstone and capped by a side gable roof, with an attached wood frame section on the left end, with a front-facing gable roof. The main entrance is located in the center of the stone section, sheltered by a small gabled porch. The house was built in 1941 to a design by Maximilian F. Mayer for Arkansas authors John Gould Fletcher and Charlie May Simon. The house was at that time well outside the bounds of Little Rock in a rural setting, and was written about by Simon in an autobiographical work called Johnswood.
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: John Gould Fletcher|