Books: Singing Fortress

Before a socialite audience in Manhattan's Hotel Biltmore one day last week, dapper, 40-year-old Poet Joseph Auslander, recently appointed to the "chair of poetry" of the Congressional Library, proposed as his first official act the building of "a singing tower," meaning a place where poets' work would be safe against "the horrors of the hour, Beast passion and the lust for power." At the end of a three-verse appeal which began

Against brutality and wrong

Build us a fortress pledged to song! . . .

Build us, O build the singing tower! listeners, uncertain...

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