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This article is taken from PN Review 111, Volume 23 Number 1, September - October 1996.

Remembering William Carlos Williams James Laughlin


A not large, unpretentious
Wooden house, the clapboards
Painted a dull mustard colour,
Two stories and an attic, set
On a little slope over the
Street level, with steps and
An iron railing going up;
By the door was a small sign:
9 Ridge Road. W.C. Williams,
MD. Please ring bell. The house
Must have been built at about
The time of World War One
And stands on an avenue of
Maple trees where the little
Business center of Rutherford
(NJ) merges into an area of
Comfortable homes inhabited
By commuters to New York,
Middle-class people mostly.
No super-highways in those
Days; by bus it was a boring
Hour's journey across the
Wetlands to Manhattan.

To this shrine, a supplicant,
I came a year after Pound had
Coaxed me into trying to become
A publisher, promising to write
His friends who might have books
That needed doing. William Carlos
Williams - What a magical name! -
Was one to whom he had written.
I was a-tremble to barge in on
One of my literary idols, who
Was not yet famous with the general
Public, but in the underground
Of the literary avant-garde,
Such as we'd heard about in
Boarding school, along with
Pound, he was ...

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