Reporters: The Poet as Journalist

Two years ago, Poet James Dickey, whose Buckdancer's Choice won the 1966 National Book Award for Poetry received a letter from a friend who had visited a home for blind children and watched as they smashed their fists against their eyes to produce a momentary shock of light. Their agony tormented him so much that he wrote, in the November Harper's, a brilliantly brooding poetic fantasy, The Eye-Beaters. It was made particularly jolting because of Dickey's marginal notations, written with the stark understatement of a wire-service reporter. "A therapist explains why the children strike their eyes," the note explains...

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