The Burdens of Formality
Essays on the Poetry of Anthony Hecht

Edited by Sydney Lea


“Hecht is clearly a poet worth attending to, and this lively, perceptive, and uniformly well-written book (its virtues in many ways mirror Hecht’s) serves as a stimulating introduction to his world.”


One of the most influential modern poets, Anthony Hecht (1923–2004) was awarded virtually every major American prize for poetry, including the Pulitzer and the Bollingen. Written mostly by other poets, in styles ranging from the informal to the scholarly, these essays explore Hecht’s image and poetic devices, his debts to other poets, and his place in the study of modern poetry. The Burdens of Formality presents varied perspectives that demonstrate the extensive influence that Hecht has commanded on the work of modern poets and the study of verse.

Contributors: Joseph Brodsky, Ashley Brown, Kenneth Gross, Edward Hirsch, Daniel Hoffman, Brad Leithauser, J. D. McClatchy, William Matthews, John Frederick Nims, Linda Orr, Alicia Ostriker, Peter Sacks, Norman Williams

Page count: 230 pp.
Trim size: 6 x 9


List price: $26.95

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Sydney Lea is a poet, essayist, and novelist whose many works include Young of the Year and A Little Wildness: Some Notes on Rambling. He was founder and long time editor of the New England Review. In 2011 he was named the Poet Laureate of Vermont.