Letter from Poetry Magazine

Letter to the Editor

by James O'Keefe
Dear Editor,

In "Dangerous Considerations: A Notebook" (October 2007), Adam Zagajewski misrepresents the career of French poet and statesman Saint-John Perse. Perse was a leading advocate in the French foreign office for the use of force against Hitler from the remilitarization of the Rhineland through the Austrian Anschluss to the Munich debacle, but was overruled by the political leadership, chiefly the Radical Party of Laval and Daladier. To lump Perse with the advocates of appeasement is a travesty. After the fall of France, Perse was forced to flee Vichy, France and found refuge in the United States through the assistance of Archibald MacLeish, then librarian of Congress. I was dismayed by Zagajewski's disregard of the facts and calumny of a great poet and statesman who, from the start, perceived the danger to civilization posed by Hitler.

Albany, California

Originally Published: December 3, 2007

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

December 2007

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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