Books: The Eternal Riddles

IN THE ROSE OF TIME (150 pp.)—Robert Fitzgerald —New Directions ($3).

One job of a good poet is to pose riddles—riddles of life, death and immortality—for the heart to answer. The difference between a good and a great poet lies in the lyricism, evocation and after effect of his oracular lines and, most important, in the cry of recognition drawn from the reader. This collection of poems, written over the past 25 years, falls far short of greatness, yet has extraordinary appeal. Fitzgerald blends his commitment to the present with a deep love of...

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