Robert Francis (poet)

Robert Francis (1901-1987) was an American poet who lived much of his life in Amherst, Massachusetts. He lived in a small house he built himself which he called Fort Juniper. Francis won the Shelley Memorial Award in 1939. One of his poetic mentors was Robert Frost, and indeed Francis's first volume of poems, Stand Here With Me (1936), displays a poetic voice eerily reminiscent of Frost's own. In later volumes, especially The Face Against the Glass (1950) and The Orb Weaver (1960), Francis found a voice distinctively his own, relaxed in meter and characterized by puns, word-plays, slant rhymes, and repetitions of key words. Aside from one long narrative poem in Frostian blank verse, Francis's poetry consists largely of concise lyrics, somewhat limited in thematic range but intensely crafted and deeply personal. He often wrote about nature. This American poet died in July 1987.

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