Books: The Nightingale Keepers

POETRY AND EXPERIENCE (204 pp.)—. Archibald MacLeish—Houqhton Mifflin ($4).

Poetry, as Archibald MacLeish sees it, is a little like a man who shuffles across a familiar rug and touches a doorknob, only to be pricked by an unexpected spark of static electricity. In that instant, two things happen. For one, the man "understands" electricity not as a textbook diagram, but as a felt experience "charged with meaning." For another, three disparate things—the man, the rug, the doorknob—have been fused with one of the cosmic forces. They have become, in MacLeish's view, links in...

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