I was not impugning the skill of Sherod Santos, which I acknowledge, but using his example to note that the classics are no longer crucial to our culture, as when Chapman, Pope, et. al. changed the literature with their versions. Santos has not changed the literature, and I tried to show how the gap between cultures is manifested in what I call his deft poems. I expressly said of that gap (in my first paragraph): “This is not the fault of the translators.” The title put on my piece was not mine, and surprised me. I would never say that Santos is sloppy. There is no anger in my piece. Willis Barnstone projects his own upon it.
Editors’ note: We intended the title to be an accurate representation of Garry Wills’s essay. We apologize if we misrepresented it. As the first publisher of many of the poems in Sherod Santos’s Greek Lyric Poetry, we agree that the poems are anything but sloppy.