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The Continuous Life Essay

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In the following essay, Bloom locates in "The Continuous Life" a "Sublime apotheosis fuller and deeper in its authority than anything previous in Strand."

It is now a decade since Mark Strand's Selected Poems appeared. That volume confirmed the vision of Strand long held by his admirers: here was an authentic artist, legitimately descended from Wallace Stevens and Elizabeth Bishop, and akin also to several crucial modern Hispanic poets. Strand's voice, always grave and measured, seemed to go through most of his work with an extraordinarily controlled consciousness of self and the limits of self, in order to avoid being engulfed by a luminous phantasmagoria. A poet of Borgesian irreality, this earlier Strand found his way to a fresh evocation of a universal anguish, one that moved dialectically between everyone's narcissism and anyone's despairing quest for survival.

Some months ago, recuperating from a recent illness, I spent many...

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This section contains 759 words
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Poetry for Students
The Continuous Life from Poetry for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.