Books: E. E. Cummings: Poet of the Heart

Edward Estlin Cummings' father, a Congregational minister, shocked his staid parishioners in Boston's Old South Church one Sunday by crying from the pulpit: "The Kingdom of Heaven is no spiritual roof garden: it's inside you!"

Poet E. E. Cummings, who died last week in New Hampshire at 67, spent a lifetime saying much the same thing. His tools were secular, but he practiced a religion nonetheless. It was the romantic individualist's religion of the heart, in which love is not an emotion but a deity. Its creed was faith in the miracle of man's...

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