Merwin, W(illiam) S(tanley).
Merwin, W[illiam] S[tanley]
(1927 - ) American poet and translator. Merwin 's poetry is remote, with stark metaphors and echoes of Eastern mysticism. In The Moving Target (1963), in an act of self - purification, both body and spirit are denied all defenses and possessions. Like William Blake, Merwin is acutely aware of man's inability to seize the present, and time and timelessness are major themes in The Carrier of Ladders (1970; Pulitzer Prize ) and Writings to an Unfinished Accompaniment (1973). In The Compass Flower (1977), surrealism is infused with a serenely meditative tone. Houses and Travellers (1977) is a collection of prose parables. Unframed Originals: Recollections (1982), a book of memoirs, recreates the author's life with other family members in rural Pennsylvania. Merwin's father, a prominent figure in these memoirs, appears again in Opening the Hand; Poems (1983). Merwin is also known for his translations, notably The Poem of the Cid (1959) and The Song of Roland (1963).