We know that Ezra Pound--to lift a phrase from T.S. Eliot in his essay on Hamlet--"had his problems."
All that is well-known and much discussed. No need to get into the Nazi-Fascist-Crazy thing. We all know about that. We know, as well, how he set to course for American poetry in the 20th century and, one could argue, well into the 21st century.
What fascinates me are the ways in which his generosity--and one can not use another word except that one-- helped poets, writers and artists to publish their works and, in some cases, survive their lives.
I know it is difficult to separate out Pound's pro-Hilter, pro-Mussolini words and actions from the man who is said to have brought James Joyce a "good pair of shoes". It is hard to imagine the kind of imaginative generosity of such a man who--I want to say almost single-handedly-- brought to the forefront of American consciousness writers whose work is now considered the very foundation of our literature.
So here are my questions to you.
Who is this century's Ezra Pound? Where do we find that kind of literary and personal generosity today? What value does this kind of generosity have in our times?
In what ways are you willing to be generous to other writers?
And, if you know of writers and editors who follow in the tradition of extraordinary personal and professional generosity, I call on you to post your story here.
Maybe we should see who's out there.... and say our "thank-yous" in advance.