Robert Creeley reads Charles Olson: 2003

05/01/2008  by Arlo Haskell  1 Comment

Polaroid photo by Elsa Dorfman


photo from the Olson archives at the University of Connecticut

As part of a panel discussion in 2003, we asked Robert Creeley to read and comment upon one of his favorite poems. It was no surprise when he selected a poem by his great friend and comrade, Charles Olson. Creeley reads passages from his introduction to Olson’s Selected Poems, and reads the latter half of Olson’s “Maximus, to Gloucester,” which concludes:

John White had seen it
in his eye
but fourteen men
of whom we know eleven

twenty-two eyes
and the snow flew
where gulls now paper
the skies

where fishing continues
and my heart lies

From KWLS 2003: The Beautiful Changes


This recording is available for noncommercial and educational use only. All rights belong to the authors. © 2008 the estate of Robert Creeley. © 2008 the estate of Charles Olson.

One Response

  1. Paul Christensen says:

    What an immense pleasure to hear my old friend Bob Creeley once again! His voice is exacting, and moving because of his own immense intelligence working those intricate sounds from his own slightly halting breath. I miss him terribly, and though I never met Olson, writing a book about him gave me a sense that he was often in the room with me. I could hear Dylan Thomas in the lines Bob read, and it brings back how intense the voices were at mid-century for Olson, Thomas and Pound are both ghosts sitting on his chest.

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