by Louis Simpson
Simpson. StrugglingTimes. Consolations
Dickinson had a cockatoo she called Semiramis and loved dearly. Whitman was a trencherman, his favorite dish a mulligan stew. Frost went for long walks. Eliot played croquet. Pound took fencing lessons. There is a snapshot of Yeats with a woman in a garden, naked to the waist and smiling. Auden, when he was old, counted the sheets of toilet paper that a visitor used.