Books: American Poet

EDWIN ARLINGTON ROBINSON (318 pp.)—Ellsworth Barnard—Macmillan ($4.75).

Six months after her son's birth in December 1869, Mrs. Robinson of Head Tide, Me. had not got around to naming the baby, her third. Distressed by this, a lady from Arlington, Mass, suggested picking a name from a hat. Out of the hat came a slip marked "Edwin." Well pleased, Mother Robinson tacked on "Arlington" in honor of the lady from Massachusetts, and Edwin Arlington Robinson was tagged with the first of many labels.

"Failure" was one of the tags he applied to himself for a long time. "Poet" was another, but Edwin Arlington Robinson...

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