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What group of poets was Ezra Pound a member of and what was unique  about its...

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zrush20 | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted January 17, 2010 at 2:04 AM via web

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What group of poets was Ezra Pound a member of and what was unique  about its poetry?

What was the name of it and What was unique about the poetry written in this group?

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Michelle Ossa | College Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

Posted January 17, 2010 at 2:45 AM (Answer #1)

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Hi, thanks for your question.

Ezra Pound was part of Des Imagistes, or Imagists, which included other poets such as William Carlos Williams, James Joyce, and Amy Lowell among the most well-known.

The Imagists were against the rules of poetry of the Georgian and Victorian periods, and insisted in a modern approach to the use of language and description.

A famous intent from Des Imagistes was its use of the phrase "to treat 'the thing' as 'a thing". In other words, forget the over representation and over-metaphoric traditions so typical of baroque poetry, forget excessive symbolism an go straight to the image you are describing, and describe its properties and elements for what they are. Present an CLEAR visual.

It would, in itself, create a sense of logic and imagery at the same time, which will ultimately lead to a much clearer and direct form of poetry. These are the same principles that rule Modern poetry and, ironically, is also a salute to the Classical forms of poetry.

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MaudlinStreet | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Senior Educator

Posted January 18, 2010 at 2:32 AM (Answer #2)

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The most famous of these poems is probably William Carlos William's "The Red Wheelbarrow."

so much depends
upon

a red wheel
barrow

glazed with rain
water

beside the white
chickens.

As the previous poster noted, the focus is a very concrete description of the image itself, with a distinct lack of imagery, figurative language, and other traditional poetic devices. On poem that is considered the ultimate example of an Imagist poem is Ezra Pound's " IN A STATION OF THE METRO":

The apparition of these faces in the crowd ; Petals on a wet, black bough.

We can see how closely this poem attempts to capture the moment when those faces became another image in Pound's mind. Also, at only 14 words, this poem is an excellent example of how Imagist poets worked at precise and concise language. On an interesting side note, the semi-colon has been a topic of much debate. Some critics argue it is a colon instead, which then leads to questions of interpretations based on punctuation.

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