Other literary forms

(Poets and Poetry in America)

Because John Logan’s reputation stems from his poetry, his fiction has, for the most part, been overlooked. Logan’s most sustained attempt at fiction, The House That Jack Built: Or, A Portrait of the Artist as a Sad Sensualist (1984), celebrated the discovery and sheer joy of language. Concerned with the poet’s young life, the book offers childhood experiences, relationships, and images that reveal the intellectual and emotional development of Logan’s poetic sensibility. Eighteen of Logan’s stories, including five previously unpublished, are gathered in John Logan: The Collected Fiction (1991). As a teacher and critic, Logan contributed essays, interviews, forewords, and reviews to numerous magazines and books, most of which were collected in A Ballet for the Ear: Interviews, Essays, and Reviews (1983), edited by A. Poulin, Jr. This volume demonstrates Logan’s wide-ranging scholarship and his dedication to the life of the poet. He explored with enthusiasm and keen insight such contrasting figures asHerman Melville and E. E. Cummings, and he developed provocative explanations for his own writing, his personal poetics, and the work and poetics of many contemporary writers. The passion of Logan’s literary life, however, is best understood after hearing the poet read; his performances were often described as “spellbinding.”