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Reviews

"Irwin has written a book of heroic meticulousness which justifies the work of Crane to the mature and the scholarly... A capacious and provocative study."

"Crane and his admirers are beneficiaries of Irwin's fine book, the most learned, perceptive, comprehensive analysis of the work ever published... Essential."

"A welcome addition to the critical shelf on the poet... the most deeply felt and closely argued case thus far for Hart Crane as not merely an accomplished poet but an impressively learned one at that."

"John T. Irwin's Hart Crane's Poetry is a late arrival from 2011 that merits notice and returning attention... Irwin does a great service in making this wide-ranging analysis available in a single volume."

"A difficult poet—Pindar, Shelley, and Rimbaud fused into one creative mind—Crane has defeated most commentary until now. Irwin reverses that dark failure. Decades of maturation have brought this study to an apotheosis. Wallace Stevens said that poetry was one of 'the enlargements of life.' After reading John Irwin’s celebration of Hart Crane, the reader can know better what Stevens meant."

"The fullest, deepest, most discerning, most instructive reading of The Bridge ever produced. An event in Crane criticism."

"As always with Irwin's work, his poetry and his critical studies, enlargement is not only of life—of Crane's and indeed of the reader's—but of the life of reading itself."

"What a gift John Irwin has given us in this, his in-depth, articulate, and convincing reading of Hart Crane’s poetry. I know of nothing to compare with Irwin’s analysis of this young visionary whose life—like Shelley’s and Keats’s—ended far too abruptly and, for the better part of a century, as if in failure. For those of us who have felt that Hart Crane’s poetry has held a profound key to who we have been as a nation and a people, this book is as much a vindication as it is a celebration. Crane heard among the thousand choiring webs of his bridge a complex, choiring music, and now Irwin helps us to hear that beautiful, tragic, transforming music as well."