Autumn 1939 • Vol. I No. 4 Book ReviewsOctober 1, 1939 |

A Good Workman

Collected Poems, 1922-1938. By Mark Van Doren. Henry Holt. $3.50 Mark Van Doren's Collected Poems let us see now the curve of his work over the two decades since its serious inception in the years right after the War. Arranged successively here, with some omissions, his six previous volumes unfold organically from the short nature lyrics of Spring Thunder and 7 p. m. The significant turning came in 1928 with Now The Sky, where in the ambitiously constructed statement of "We Come Too Late,” as well as in the title-poem, he recognizes contemporary man’s inevitable separation from nature, his inability now to immerse himself in it with the undiverted wholeness which Van Doren had sought in his earliest beginnings. "Farewell to Fields,” which he placed at the end of this book, marks his resolution to shift his attention from these instructors to the world of men and women, and the result, three years later, was Jonathan Gentry. This long narrative recounts the history of fi

Already have an account? Login

Join KR for even more to read.

Register for a free account to read five free pieces a month from our current issue and digital archive.
Register for Free and Read This Piece

Or become a subscriber today and get complete, immediate access to our digital archives at every subscription level.

Read More


Your free registration with Kenyon review incudes access to exclusive content, early access to program registration, and more.


With your support, we’ll continue 
to cultivate talent and publish extraordinary literature from diverse voices around the world.