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Cynthia Zarin   The Watercourse  
Cynthia Zarin    




 

W.H. Auden remained a dedicated formalist throughout his career. His style matured under the shadows of the high modernists like Gertrude Stein, H.D., David Jones, and Ezra Pound, who determinedly broke with traditional metrics and voicings of European poetry.

In much the same manner, Cynthia Zarin writes in a style that stands out against the more casual styles of the New York School (and post-New York School) or the wildly multivalent outpourings of the L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E schools of poetry that dominated, to varying extents, the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s in American poetry. In the sanctuary (rare in New York City) provided by the grounds of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, where she is poet in residence, amid gardens where peacocks strut and children's voices can be heard in the small school, Cynthia Zarin composes formal, meditative poems that remind the reader of Elizabeth Bishop and Richard Wilbur.

--Ernest Hilbert

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