Links and More for Denise Levertov:John Felstiner: "'that witnessing presence': Life Illumined Around Denise Levertov"
Kenneth Rexroth played an important role in the development of Levertov's writing career.
He admiringly wrote about Levertov's writing:
clear, sparse, immediate and vibrant with a very special sensibility and completely feminine insight. She is not only the most subtly skillful poet of her generation, she is far and away the most profound, and what may be more important, the most modest and the most moving. She can communicate the same vertiginous rapture as the great imagist poet H.D. [Hilda Doolittle]. (“The New American Poetry” originally appeared in the New York Times Book Review (12 February 1961) and was reprinted in Assays (New Directions, 1961). Copyright 1961. Reproduced here by permission of the Kenneth Rexroth Trust.)
In 1969, Denise Levertov dedicated “3 a.m., September 1” to Kenneth Rexroth:
Warm wind, the leaves
rustling without dryness,
hills dissolved into silver.
It could be any age,
four hundred years ago or a time
of post-revolutionary peace,
the rivers clean again, birth rate and crops
somehow in balance…
In heavy dew
under the moon the blond grasses
lean in swathes on the field slope. Fervently
the crickets practice their religion of ecstasy.
(Denise Levertov, Summer Poems/1969. oyez/Berkeley, 1970)
Critics have also been very interested in the spiritual components of Levertov's work and life...
Here are two articles focusing on this vein:Dougherty, James. "PRESENCE, SILENCE AND THE HOLY IN DENISE LEVERTOV'S POEMS." Renascence 58.4 (Summer2006 2006): 304-326. "Denise Levertov claimed that from the age of about ten she knew she was 'an artist person and had a destiny'."
Greene, Dana. "A poet's pilgrimage." National Catholic Reporter 43.25 (27 Apr. 2007): 14-15.