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Hart Crane

Hart Crane

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Career


Throughout the early 1920s, small but well-respected literary magazines published some of Crane’s lyrics, gaining him, among the avant-garde, a respect that White Buildings
White Buildings
The first collection of poetry by Hart Crane, an American modernist poet critical to both lyrical and language poetic traditions.Featuring 'For the Marriage of Faustus and Helen,' Crane's much-loved love poem, the 'Voyages' series, and some of his most famous lyrics--'My Grandmother's Love...

(1926), his first volume, ratified and strengthened. White Buildings contains many of Crane’s best lyrics, including "For the Marriage of Faustus and Helen," and "Voyages
Voyages (poem)
Contained in Hart Crane's first collection of poems, White Buildings , 'Voyages' was composed across six years , with sections published as early as 1923. Containing one of Crane's most famous lyrics, 'Voyages: II,' this love-cycle of six poems was largely fueled by his love affair with Emil...

", a powerful sequence of erotic poems, was written while he was falling in love with Emil Opffer, a Danish merchant marine. "Faustus and Helen" was part of a larger artistic struggle to meet modernity with something more than despair. Crane identified T. S. Eliot with that kind of despair, and while he acknowledged the greatness of The Waste Land
The Waste Land
The Waste Land[A] is a 434-line[B] modernist poem by T. S. Eliot published in 1922. It has been called "one of the most important poems of the 20th century." Despite the poem's obscurity—its shifts between satire and prophecy, its abrupt and unannounced changes of speaker, location and time, its...

, he also said it was "so damned dead," an impasse, and a refusal to see "certain spiritual events and possibilities." Crane’s self-appointed work would be to bring those spiritual events and possibilities to poetic life, and so create "a mystical synthesis of America."

Crane returned to New York in 1928, living with friends and taking temporary jobs until moving back to Brooklyn, first to 77 Willow Street. He had a love affair with Emil Opffer, a ship’s purser. Emil invited Crane to live in his father’s home at 110 Columbia Heights in Brooklyn Heights
Brooklyn Heights, Brooklyn
Brooklyn Heights is a culturally diverse neighborhood within the New York City borough of Brooklyn. Originally referred to as 'Brooklyn Village', it has been a prominent area of Brooklyn since 1834. As of 2000, Brooklyn Heights sustained a population of 22,594 people. The neighborhood is part of...

, New York. Crane was overjoyed at the views the location afforded him. He wrote his mother and grandmother in the spring of 1924:
His ambition to synthesize America was expressed in The Bridge
The Bridge (long poem)
The Bridge, first published in 1930 by the Black Sun Press, is Hart Crane's first, and only, attempt at a long poem. The Bridge was inspired by New York City's "poetry landmark", the...

(1930), intended to be an uplifting counter to Eliot's
T. S. Eliot
Thomas Stearns "T. S." Eliot OM was a playwright, literary critic, and arguably the most important English-language poet of the 20th century. Although he was born an American he moved to the United Kingdom in 1914 and was naturalised as a British subject in 1927 at age 39.The poem that made his...

's The Waste Land
The Waste Land
The Waste Land[A] is a 434-line[B] modernist poem by T. S. Eliot published in 1922. It has been called "one of the most important poems of the 20th century." Despite the poem's obscurity—its shifts between satire and prophecy, its abrupt and unannounced changes of speaker, location and time, its...

. The Brooklyn Bridge
Brooklyn Bridge
The Brooklyn Bridge is one of the oldest suspension bridges in the United States. Completed in 1883, it connects the New York City boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn by spanning the East River...

 is both the poem’s central symbol and its poetic starting point.Poetry Foundation profile Crane found what a place to start his synthesis in Brooklyn. Arts patron Otto H. Kahn
Otto Hermann Kahn
Otto Hermann Kahn was an investment banker, collector, philanthropist, and patron of the arts.-Life and career:He was born on February 21, 1867, and raised in the city of Mannheim, Germany, to Jewish parents...

 gave him $2,000 to begin work on the epic poem. When he wore out his welcome at the Opffers, Crane left for Paris in early 1929 but failed to leave his personal problems behind.

While in Paris in February 1929, Harry Crosby
Harry Crosby
Harry Crosby was an American heir, a bon vivant, poet, publisher, and for some, epitomized the Lost Generation in American literature. He was the son of one of the richest banking families in New England, a member of the Boston Brahmin, and the nephew of Jane Norton Grew, the wife of financier J....

, who with his wife Caresse Crosby owned the fine arts press Black Sun Press
Black Sun Press
The Black Sun Press was an English language book publisher founded in 1927 as Éditions Narcisse by poet Harry Crosby and his wife Caresse Crosby , American expatriates living in Paris...

, offered Crane the use of their country retreat, Le Moulin du Soleil in Ermenonville
Ermenonville
Ermenonville is a small village in northern France. It is designated municipally as a commune within the département of Oise.Ermenonville is notable for its park named for Jean-Jacques Rousseau by René Louis de Girardin...

. They hoped he could use the time to concentrate on completing The Bridge. Crane spent several weeks at their estate where he roughed out a draft of the "Cape Hatteras" section, a key part of his epic poem. In late June that year, Crane returned from the south of France to Paris. Harry noted in his journal, "Hart C. back from Marseilles where he slept with his thirty sailors and he began again to drink Cutty Sark..." Crane got drunk at the Cafe Select and fought with waiters over his tab. When the Paris police were called, he fought with them and was beaten. They arrested and jailed him, fining him 800 francs. After six days in prison at La Sante
La Santé Prison
La Santé Prison is a prison operated by the Ministry of Justice located in the 14th arrondissement of Paris, France. It is one of the most famous prisons in France, with both VIP and high security wings....

, Harry Crosby paid Crane's fine and advanced him money for the passage back to the United States where he finally finished The Bridge.

The Bridge received poor reviews, but Crane’s sense of his own failure became crushing. It was during the late 1920s, while he was finishing The Bridge, that his drinking, always a problem, became notably worse.

Death


Crane visited Mexico
Mexico
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

 in 1931–32 on a Guggenheim Fellowship
Guggenheim Fellowship
Guggenheim Fellowships are American grants that have been awarded annually since 1925 by the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation to those "who have demonstrated exceptional capacity for productive scholarship or exceptional creative ability in the arts." Each year, the foundation makes...

 and his drinking continued as he suffered from bouts of alternating depression and elation. When Peggy Cowley, wife of his friend Malcolm Cowley
Malcolm Cowley
Malcolm Cowley was an American novelist, poet, literary critic, and journalist.-Early life:...

, agreed to a divorce, she joined Crane. As far as is known, she was his only heterosexual partner. "The Broken Tower
The Broken Tower
The last new poem meant to be published in Hart Crane's life, 'The Broken Tower' has been widely acknowledged as one of the best lyrics of Crane's last years, if not his career...

," one of his last published poems, emerged from that affair. Crane still felt himself a failure, though, in part because he recommenced homosexual activity in spite of his relationship with Cowley.

While on board the steamship SS Orizaba enroute to New York, he was beaten after making sexual advances to a male crew member, seeming to confirm his own idea that one could not be happy as a homosexual. Just before noon on April 27, 1932, Hart Crane jumped overboard into the Gulf of Mexico
Gulf of Mexico
The Gulf of Mexico is a partially landlocked ocean basin largely surrounded by the North American continent and the island of Cuba. It is bounded on the northeast, north and northwest by the Gulf Coast of the United States, on the southwest and south by Mexico, and on the southeast by Cuba. In...

. Although he had been drinking heavily and left no suicide note, witnesses believed his intentions to be suicidal, as several reported that he exclaimed "Goodbye, everybody!" before throwing himself overboard. (The legend among poets is: He walked to the fantail, took off his coat quietly, and jumped.) His body was never recovered. A marker on his father's tombstone in Garrettsville includes the inscription, "Harold Hart Crane 1899–1932 lost at sea".

Poetics


Crane's critical effort, like Keats
John Keats
John Keats was an English Romantic poet. Along with Lord Byron and Percy Bysshe Shelley, he was one of the key figures in the second generation of the Romantic movement, despite the fact that his work had been in publication for only four years before his death.Although his poems were not...

 and Rilke
Rainer Maria Rilke
René Karl Wilhelm Johann Josef Maria Rilke , better known as Rainer Maria Rilke, was a Bohemian–Austrian poet. He is considered one of the most significant poets in the German language...

, is most pronounced in his letters: he corresponded regularly with Allen Tate
Allen Tate
John Orley Allen Tate was an American poet, essayist, social commentator, and Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress from 1943 to 1944.-Life:...

, Yvor Winters
Yvor Winters
Arthur Yvor Winters was an American poet and literary critic.-As modernist:Winters's early poetry, which appeared in small avant-garde magazines alongside work by writers like James Joyce and Gertrude Stein, was written in the modernist idiom, and was heavily influenced both by Native American...

, and Gorham Munson
Gorham Munson
Gorham Bockhaven Munson was an American literary critic.Gorham was born in Amityville, New York to Hubert Barney Munson and Carrie Louise Morrow. He received his B.A. degree from Wesleyan University in 1917. He married Elizabeth Hurwitz on April 2, 1921 Brooklyn...

, and shared critical dialogues with Eugene O'Neill
Eugene O'Neill
Eugene Gladstone O'Neill was an American playwright and Nobel laureate in Literature. His poetically titled plays were among the first to introduce into American drama techniques of realism earlier associated with Russian playwright Anton Chekhov, Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen, and Swedish...

, William Carlos Williams
William Carlos Williams
William Carlos Williams was an American poet closely associated with modernism and Imagism. He was also a pediatrician and general practitioner of medicine, having graduated from the University of Pennsylvania...

, E. E. Cummings
E. E. Cummings
Edward Estlin Cummings , popularly known as E. E. Cummings, with the abbreviated form of his name often written by others in lowercase letters as e.e. cummings , was an American poet, painter, essayist, author, and playwright...

, Sherwood Anderson
Sherwood Anderson
Sherwood Anderson was an American novelist and short story writer. His most enduring work is the short story sequence Winesburg, Ohio. Writers he has influenced include Ernest Hemingway, William Faulkner, John Steinbeck, J. D. Salinger, and Amos Oz.-Early life:Anderson was born in Clyde, Ohio,...

, Kenneth Burke
Kenneth Burke
Kenneth Duva Burke was a major American literary theorist and philosopher. Burke's primary interests were in rhetoric and aesthetics.-Personal history:...

, Waldo Frank
Waldo Frank
Waldo Frank was a prolific novelist, historian, literary and social critic. Most well-known for his studies of Spanish and Latin American literature, Frank served as chairman of the First Americans Writers Congress and became the first president of the League of American Writers.-Biography:Frank...

, Harriet Monroe
Harriet Monroe
Harriet Monroe was an American editor, scholar, literary critic, poet and patron of the arts. She is best known as the founding publisher and long-time editor of Poetry Magazine, which made its debut in 1912. As a supporter of the poets Ezra Pound, H. D., T. S...

, Marianne Moore
Marianne Moore
Marianne Moore was an American Modernist poet and writer noted for her irony and wit.- Life :Moore was born in Kirkwood, Missouri, in the manse of the Presbyterian church where her maternal grandfather, John Riddle Warner, served as pastor. She was the daughter of mechanical engineer and inventor...

, and Gertrude Stein
Gertrude Stein
Gertrude Stein was an American writer, poet and art collector who spent most of her life in France.-Early life:...

. Most serious work on Crane begins with his letters, selections of which are available in many editions of his poetry; his letters to Munson, Tate, Winters, and his patron, Otto Hermann Kahn
Otto Hermann Kahn
Otto Hermann Kahn was an investment banker, collector, philanthropist, and patron of the arts.-Life and career:He was born on February 21, 1867, and raised in the city of Mannheim, Germany, to Jewish parents...

, are particularly insightful. His two most famous stylistic defenses emerged from correspondences: his Emersonian
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Ralph Waldo Emerson was an American essayist, lecturer, and poet, who led the Transcendentalist movement of the mid-19th century...

 "General Aims and Theories" (1925) was written to urge Eugene O’Neill’s critical foreword to White Buildings, then passed around among friends, yet unpublished during Crane's life; and the famous "Letter to Harriet Monroe" (1926) was part of an exchange for the publication of "At Melville's Tomb" in Poetry.

The "Logic of Metaphor"


As with Eliot's "objective correlative
Objective correlative
An objective correlative is a literary term referring to a symbolic article used to provide explicit, rather than implicit, access to such traditionally inexplicable concepts as emotion or colour.- Origin of terminology :Popularized by T. S...

," a certain vocabulary haunts Crane criticism, his "logic of metaphor" being perhaps the most vexed. His most quoted formulation is in the circulated, if long unpublished, "General Aims and Theories": "As to technical considerations: the motivation of the poem must be derived from the implicit emotional dynamics of the materials used, and the terms of expression employed are often selected less for their logical (literal) significance than for their associational meanings. Via this and their metaphorical inter-relationships, the entire construction of the poem is raised on the organic principle of a 'logic of metaphor,' which antedates our so-called pure logic, and which is the genetic basis of all speech, hence consciousness and thought-extension.

There is also some mention of it, though it is not so much presented as a critical neologism, in his letter to Harriet Monroe: "The logic of metaphor is so organically entrenched in pure sensibility that it can't be thoroughly traced or explain outside of historical sciences, like philology and anthropology." L. S. Dembo's influential study of The Bridge, Hart Crane's Sanskrit Charge (1960), reads this 'logic' well within the familiar rhetoric of the Romantics
Romanticism
Romanticism was an artistic, literary and intellectual movement that originated in the second half of the 18th century in Europe, and gained strength in reaction to the Industrial Revolution...

: "The Logic of metaphor was simply the written form of the 'bright logic' of the imagination, the crucial sign stated, the Word made words.... As practiced, the logic of metaphor theory is reducible to a fairly simple linguistic principle: the symbolized meaning of an image takes precedence over its literal meaning; regardless of whether the vehicle of an image makes sense, the reader is expected to grasp its tenor.

Difficulty



The publication of White Buildings
White Buildings
The first collection of poetry by Hart Crane, an American modernist poet critical to both lyrical and language poetic traditions.Featuring 'For the Marriage of Faustus and Helen,' Crane's much-loved love poem, the 'Voyages' series, and some of his most famous lyrics--'My Grandmother's Love...

was delayed by Eugene O'Neill
Eugene O'Neill
Eugene Gladstone O'Neill was an American playwright and Nobel laureate in Literature. His poetically titled plays were among the first to introduce into American drama techniques of realism earlier associated with Russian playwright Anton Chekhov, Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen, and Swedish...

's struggle (and eventual failure) to articulate his appreciation in a foreword to it; and many critics since have used Crane's difficulty as an excuse for a quick dismissal. Even a young Tennessee Williams
Tennessee Williams
Thomas Lanier "Tennessee" Williams III was an American writer who worked principally as a playwright in the American theater. He also wrote short stories, novels, poetry, essays, screenplays and a volume of memoirs...

, then falling in love with Crane's poetry, could "hardly understand a single line—of course the individual lines aren't supposed to be intelligible. The message, if there actually is one, comes from the total effect.". It was not lost on Crane, then, that his poetry was difficult. Some of his best, and practically only, essays originated as encouraging epistles: explications and stylistic apologies to editors, updates to his patron, and the variously well-considered or impulsive letters to his friends. It was, for instance, only the exchange with Harriet Monroe
Harriet Monroe
Harriet Monroe was an American editor, scholar, literary critic, poet and patron of the arts. She is best known as the founding publisher and long-time editor of Poetry Magazine, which made its debut in 1912. As a supporter of the poets Ezra Pound, H. D., T. S...

 at Poetry when she initially refused to print "At Melville’s Tomb" that urged Crane to describe his "logic of metaphor" in print. But describe it he did, then complaining that: "If the poet is to be held completely to the already evolved and exploited sequences of imagery and logic—what field of added consciousness and increased perceptions (the actual province of poetry, if not lullabies) can be expected when one has to relatively return to the alphabet every breath or two? In the minds of people who have sensitively read, seen, and experienced a great deal, isn’t there a terminology something like short-hand as compared to usual description and dialectics, which the artist ought to be right in trusting as a reasonable connective agent toward fresh concepts, more inclusive evaluations?"

Monroe was not impressed, though she acknowledged that others were, and printed the exchange alongside the poem: "You find me testing metaphors, and poetic concept in general, too much by logic, whereas I find you pushing logic to the limit in a painfully intellectual search for emotion, for poetic motive." In any case, Crane had a relatively well-developed rhetoric for the defense of his poems; here is an excerpt from "General Aims and Theories": "New conditions of life germinate new forms of spiritual articulation. ...the voice of the present, if it is to be known, must be caught at the risk of speaking in idioms and circumlocutions sometimes shocking to the scholar and historians of logic."

Influence


Some poet-critics such as Yvor Winters, have been ambivalent about Hart's work. Winters’s review in The Bridge
The Bridge (long poem)
The Bridge, first published in 1930 by the Black Sun Press, is Hart Crane's first, and only, attempt at a long poem. The Bridge was inspired by New York City's "poetry landmark", the...

in Poetry grants Crane’s status of a "poet of genius" as a matter of course, before going on to say that the poem augurs a "public catastrophe". Crane was admired by artists such as Allen Tate
Allen Tate
John Orley Allen Tate was an American poet, essayist, social commentator, and Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress from 1943 to 1944.-Life:...

, Eugene O'Neill
Eugene O'Neill
Eugene Gladstone O'Neill was an American playwright and Nobel laureate in Literature. His poetically titled plays were among the first to introduce into American drama techniques of realism earlier associated with Russian playwright Anton Chekhov, Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen, and Swedish...

, Kenneth Burke
Kenneth Burke
Kenneth Duva Burke was a major American literary theorist and philosopher. Burke's primary interests were in rhetoric and aesthetics.-Personal history:...

, Edmund Wilson
Edmund Wilson
Edmund Wilson was an American writer and literary and social critic and noted man of letters.-Early life:Wilson was born in Red Bank, New Jersey. His father, Edmund Wilson, Sr., was a lawyer and served as New Jersey Attorney General. Wilson attended The Hill School, a college preparatory...

, E. E. Cummings
E. E. Cummings
Edward Estlin Cummings , popularly known as E. E. Cummings, with the abbreviated form of his name often written by others in lowercase letters as e.e. cummings , was an American poet, painter, essayist, author, and playwright...

 and William Carlos Williams
William Carlos Williams
William Carlos Williams was an American poet closely associated with modernism and Imagism. He was also a pediatrician and general practitioner of medicine, having graduated from the University of Pennsylvania...

. Although Hart had his sharp critics, among them Marianne Moore
Marianne Moore
Marianne Moore was an American Modernist poet and writer noted for her irony and wit.- Life :Moore was born in Kirkwood, Missouri, in the manse of the Presbyterian church where her maternal grandfather, John Riddle Warner, served as pastor. She was the daughter of mechanical engineer and inventor...

 and Ezra Pound
Ezra Pound
Ezra Weston Loomis Pound was an American expatriate poet and critic and a major figure in the early modernist movement in poetry...

, Moore did publish his work, as did T. S. Eliot, who, moving even further out of Pound's sphere, may have borrowed some of Crane's imagery for Four Quartets
Four Quartets
Four Quartets is a set of four poems written by T. S. Eliot that were published individually over a six-year period. The first poem, "Burnt Norton", was written and published with a collection of his early works following the production of Eliot's play Murder in the Cathedral...

.

Over the next two generations, Jack Kerouac
Jack Kerouac
Jean-Louis "Jack" Lebris de Kerouac was an American novelist and poet. He is considered a literary iconoclast and, alongside William S. Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg, a pioneer of the Beat Generation. Kerouac is recognized for his spontaneous method of writing, covering topics such as Catholic...

 and Allen Ginsberg
Allen Ginsberg
Irwin Allen Ginsberg was an American poet and one of the leading figures of the Beat Generation in the 1950s. He vigorously opposed militarism, materialism and sexual repression...

 read The Bridge together, John Berryman
John Berryman
John Allyn Berryman was an American poet and scholar, born in McAlester, Oklahoma. He was a major figure in American poetry in the second half of the 20th century and was considered a key figure in the Confessional school of poetry...

 wrote him one of his famous elegies
Elegy
In literature, an elegy is a mournful, melancholic or plaintive poem, especially a funeral song or a lament for the dead.-History:The Greek term elegeia originally referred to any verse written in elegiac couplets and covering a wide range of subject matter, including epitaphs for tombs...

, and Robert Lowell
Robert Lowell
Robert Traill Spence Lowell IV was an American poet, considered the founder of the confessional poetry movement. He was appointed the sixth Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress where he served from 1947 until 1948...

 published his "Words for Hart Crane" in Life Studies
Life Studies
Life Studies is the fourth book of poems by Robert Lowell. Most critics consider it one of Lowell's most important books, and the Academy of American Poets named it one of their Groundbreaking Books. The book won the National Book Award for poetry in 1960.-Publication:Life Studies was first...

(1959): "Who asks for me, the Shelley of my age, / must lay his heart out for my bed and board." Perhaps most reverently, Tennessee Williams
Tennessee Williams
Thomas Lanier "Tennessee" Williams III was an American writer who worked principally as a playwright in the American theater. He also wrote short stories, novels, poetry, essays, screenplays and a volume of memoirs...

 wanted to be "given back to the sea" at the "point most nearly determined as the point at which Hart Crane gave himself back.". One of Williams's last plays, a "ghost play" titled "Steps Must Be Gentle," explores Crane's relationship with his mother. Such important affections have made Crane a "poet's poet". Thomas Lux
Thomas Lux
-Biography:Thomas Lux was born in Northampton, Massachusetts, son of a milkman and a Sears & Roebuck switchboard operator, neither of whom graduated from high school. Lux was raised in Massachusetts on a dairy farm. He was, according to those who knew him in high school, very good at baseball,...

 offers, for instance: "If the devil came to me and said 'Tom, you can be dead and Hart can be alive,' I'd take the deal in a heartbeat if the devil promised, when arisen, Hart would have to go straight into A.A." Beyond poetry, Crane's suicide inspired several works of art by noted artist Jasper Johns
Jasper Johns
Jasper Johns, Jr. is an American contemporary artist who works primarily in painting and printmaking.-Life:Born in Augusta, Georgia, Jasper Johns spent his early life in Allendale, South Carolina with his paternal grandparents after his parents' marriage failed...

, including "Periscope" and "Diver," the "Symphony for Three Orchestras" by Elliott Carter (inspired by the "Bridge") and the painting by Marsden Hartley
Marsden Hartley
Marsden Hartley was an American Modernist painter, poet, and essayist.-Early life and education:Hartley was born in Lewiston, Maine, where his English parents had settled. He was the youngest of nine children. His mother died when he was eight, and his father remarried four years later to Martha...

 "Eight Bells' Folly, Memorial for Hart Crane." Neil Young
Neil Young
Neil Percival Young, OC, OM is a Canadian singer-songwriter who is widely regarded as one of the most influential musicians of his generation...

 wrote The Bridge, a song on the Time Fades Away
Time Fades Away
Time Fades Away is a 1973 live album by Neil Young, consisting of previously unreleased material. It was recorded with The Stray Gators on the tour following 1972's highly successful Harvest and has not been reissued on CD due to Young's dissatisfaction with that particular series of concerts...

 album, which was inspired by the poetry of Crane, and after which The Bridge School and Bridge School Benefit
Bridge School Benefit
The Bridge School Benefit is an annual non-profit charity concert held in Mountain View, California, every October at the Shoreline Amphitheatre. The concerts are all organized by musician Neil Young and his wife, Pegi....

 are named.

See also


  • Modernist poetry in English
    Modernist poetry in English
    Modernist poetry in English is generally considered to have emerged 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...

  • Poetry of the United States
    Poetry of the United States
    American poetry, the poetry of the United States, arose first as efforts by colonists to add their voices to English poetry in the 17th century, well before the constitutional unification of the thirteen colonies...


Biographies

  • Fisher, Clive. Hart Crane: A Life. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2002. ISBN 0-300-09061-7.
  • Horton, Philip. Hart Crane: The Life of An American Poet. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 1937.
  • Meaker, M.J. Sudden Endings, 13 Profiles in Depth of Famous Suicides. Garden, NY: Doubleday & Company, Inc., 1964. pp. 108–133.
  • Mariani, Paul
    Paul Mariani
    Paul Mariani is an American poet and a professor at Boston College. He grew up on Long Island, the eldest of seven children...

    . The Broken Tower: A Life of Hart Crane. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 1999. ISBN 0-393-32041-3.
  • Unterecker, John. Voyager: A Life of Hart Crane. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
    Farrar, Straus and Giroux
    Farrar, Straus and Giroux is an American book publishing company, founded in 1946 by Roger W. Straus, Jr. and John C. Farrar. Known primarily as Farrar, Straus in its first decade of existence, the company was renamed several times, including Farrar, Straus and Young and Farrar, Straus and Cudahy...

    , 1969.
  • Weber, Brom. Hart Crane: A Biographical and Critical Study. New York: The Bodley Press, 1948.

Selected criticism


  • Corn, Alfred. "Hart Crane's 'Atlantis'". The Metamorphoses of Metaphor. New York: Viking, 1987.
  • Dean, Tim. "Hart Crane's Poetics of Privacy". American Literary History 8:1, 1996.
  • Dembo, L. S. Hart Crane's Sanskrit Charge: A Study of The Bridge. Ithaca, New York: Cornell University Press, 1960).
  • Gabriel, Daniel. Hart Crane and the Modernist Epic: Canon and Genre Formation in Crane, Pound, Eliot and Williams. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007.
  • Grossman, Allen. "Hart Crane and Poetry: A Consideration of Crane's Intense Poetics With Reference to 'The Return'". ELH 48:4, 1981.
  • Grossman, Allen. "On Communicative Difficulty in General and 'Difficult' Poetry in Particular: The Example of Hart Crane's 'The Broken Tower'". Poem Present lecture series at The University of Chicago, 2004.
  • Hammer, Langdon. Hart Crane & Allen Tate: Janus-Faced Modernism. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1993.


  • Herman, Barbara. "The Language of Hart Crane", The Sewanee Review 58, 1950.
  • Lewis, R. W. B. The Poetry of Hart Crane: A Critical Study. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1967.
  • Nickowitz, Peter. Rhetoric and Sexuality: The Poetry of Hart Crane, Elizabeth Bishop, and James Merrill. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2006.
  • Pease, Donald. "Blake, Crane, Whitman, and Modernism: A Poetics of Pure Possibility". PMLA 96:1, 1981.
  • Ramsey, Roger. "A Poetics for The Bridge". Twentieth Century Literature 26:3, 1980.
  • Reed, Brian. "Hart Crane’s Victrola". Modernism/Modernity 7.1, 2000.
  • Reed, Brian. Hart Crane: After His Lights. Tuscaloosa, AL: University of Alabama Press, 2006.
  • Riddel, Joseph. "Hart Crane's Poetics of Failure". ELH 33, 1966.

  • Rowe, John Carlos. "The 'Super-Historical' Sense of Hart Crane’s The Bridge". Genre 11:4, 1978.
  • Schwartz, Joseph. Hart Crane: A Reference Guide. Boston: G.K. Hall & Co., 1983.
  • Michael Snediker
    Michael Snediker
    Michael D Snediker is a well known poet and a scholar of American literature and disability theory. He is Queens National Scholar and Assistant Professor of American Literature at Queen’s University, in Kingston, Ontario...

    . "Hart Crane's Smile". Modernism/modernity 12.4, 2005.
  • Trachtenberg, Alan. Brooklyn Bridge: Fact and Symbol. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1979.
  • Unterecker, John. "The Architecture of The Bridge". Wisconsin Studies in Contemporary Literature 3:2, 1962.
  • Winters, Yvor. "The Progress of Hart Crane". Poetry 36, June 1930.
  • Winters, Yvor In Defense of Reason. New York: The Swallow Press and William Morrow, 1947.
  • Yannella, Philip R. "'Inventive Dust': The Metamorphoses of 'For the Marriage of Faustus and Helen'". Contemporary Literature 15, 1974.
  • Yingling, Thomas E. Hart Crane and the Homosexual Text: New Thresholds, New Anatomies. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1990.


External links