Letter from Poetry Magazine

Letter to the Editor

by Phyllis Hoge Thompson
Dear Editor,

I found Michael Hofmann's impassioned essay-review on the 
translations of the poetry of Zbigniew Herbert an exhilarating introduction to someone new to me. The only Herbert I have known till now was my old friend George. Now there's this Pole, clearly a master whose work I will have to find, and certainly in earlier translations. Hofmann's furious intensity of language in his praise for Herbert and in his wrenched sadness about the new translation struck me as compellingly persuasive. It's downright exciting to read commentary by someone who holds strong beliefs about what makes good poetry and is not shy about expressing them, someone who cares as deeply as Hofmann does about what matters.

Coral Gables, Florida

Originally Published: October 27, 2008

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This prose originally appeared in the September 2007 issue of Poetry magazine

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