The Life of William Carlos Williams Essay

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The Life of William Carlos Williams

“Nothing whips my blood like verse.” These are the famous words of the great poet, William Carlos Williams. Williams was born on September 17, 1883 in Rutherford, New Jersey. He spent most of his life in Rutherford, so today he is a local hero. Williams’ mother was Puerto Rican and almost had pure Spanish blood. His father was American. As a child, Williams’ dad was a salesman and was often away from home. Thus, they didn’t see each other very much. When Williams was four, he attended school in Switzerland and France for three years. Then his family moved back to Rutherford. Williams started writing poetry at Horace Mann High School, in New York City. His parents loved literature and the visual arts,
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But do you think Williams had no help making himself better at poetry? Actually, Williams had two other poets help develop him as a writer. One was Ezra Pound. When Williams was in college, Ezra helped develop Williams’s “aesthetic imagism.” This approach to poetry emphasized concrete ideas over abstractions. This is one of the key qualities that make William Carlos Williams different from most other poets. Another way Ezra helped Williams become a great poet is that he brought him to a literary circle that was run by the poet Hilda Doolittle. Hilda showed Williams that poetry wasn’t all about writing about nature and memories, but just random everyday things. A good example of this is Williams’ poem, “The Red Wheelbarrow.” There’s nothing special about a wheelbarrow, but still Williams can make an interesting poem out of it. Since Williams became a great poet at such an early age, he had many early successes. His first initial publication was in 1909, and seventeen years after that he received the Dial Award for excellence in his writing. In 1931 Williams received Guarantor’s Prize for Poetry. After those two awards, William felt he was pretty accomplished and could speak his opinion. He disliked all the “isms” of writing, especially people who wrote “loosely and carelessly.” He also thought modern American life had no thought to it. For saying this he was loved by many people, and I think changed the world be making people think more about things before they
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