"really, it is not the business of the gods to bake clay pots."
Marianne Moore (1887-1972)
Marianne Moore was born in St. Louis on November 15, 1887. She was an American Modernist poet, critic, translator, and editor. She is also the author of various collections of poetry, including "Observations" (1924) and "What Are Years?" (1941) as well as "In This Age of Hard Trying, Nonchalance is Good And" (1916). She died on Feb. 5, 1972.
"It is not possible to live without religious faith."
Moore's life heavily affected her poetry in many ways, but particularly through her religion. Growing up, her grandfather was a presbyterian pastor and her entire family were devout presbyterians. Due to this, she included many illusions to the Bible within her works and most or her poems also included the central themes of strength and adversity.
Unlike many of the modernist poets, who possessed varying degrees of anti-Semitism, Moore found poetic inspiration in Jewish literary tradition. This fact also stems from her upbringing in a more tolerant environment within her church. She greatly valued freedom and individuality across peoples.
Marianne Moore also went against many popular modernist beliefs and styles of writing. Her stanzas and lines count syllables instead of metric feet. Most readers have to work to decipher her syntax as well.
A Closer Look...
In-Depth Annotation of "In This Age of Hard Trying, Nonchalance Is Good and"