Standing On The Shoulders Of Our Mentors

Marvin Bell died yesterday. A poetic giant has fallen. His Dead Man poems are everything good poetry is about: deeply imagistic, humane, formally ambitious, culturally significant, political without pretension, and on and on. It is the work of a lifetime. His death made me realize most of my poetic mentors are now gone. Hayden Carruth. Mark Strand. Philip Levine. And now Marvin Bell.