An Open Map
The Correspondence of Robert Duncan and Charles Olson
Published by: University of New Mexico Press
The correspondence of Robert Duncan and Charles Olson is one of the foundational literary exchanges of twentieth-century American poetry. The 130 letters collected in this volume begin in 1947 just after the two poets first meet in Berkeley, California, and continue to Olson's death in January 1970. Both men initiated a novel stance toward poetry, and they matched each other with huge accomplishments, an enquiring, declarative intelligence, wide-ranging interests in history and occult literature, and the urgent demand to be a poet. More than a literary correspondence, An Open Map gives insight into an essential period of poetic advancement in cultural history.
"Invaluable archival documents. . . . Bertholf and Smith also supply a strong accounting of the context of Olson and Duncan's correspondence in their introduction to An Open Map."--Eric Keenaghan, Journal of Modern Literature
"These letters illuminate and inform many of the most important discussions in US poetry of the time."--Daniel Katz, American Literary History
"An essential correspondence between two [of] the most innovative and visionary poets in American literature. In these letters is contained the generative energies of some of the best poetry written in the twentieth century."--Peter O'Leary, author of Gnostic Contagion: Robert Duncan and the Poetry of Illness