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Transcript of Theodore Roethke
and set up a greenhouse Theodore spent much of his adolescence in the greenhouse, making the basis for many of his poems He was ill most
of his childhood PRUSSIA EAST PRUSSIA By the time he was 13, his father
died of cancer and his uncle committed suicide Theodore went to the University of Michigan He later went to Harvard U Abandoning graduate study for economic reasons, he taught English at several universities Had an affair with poet and critic Louise Bogan before returning to Michigan Married Beatrice O'Connell, a former student Seleted poems Theodore's poems are ones of nature, always referring to life, to plants specificity. In his ode to Otto, his father, he speaks of his daily life, saying things like;
"His hand could fit into a woman's glove,
And in a wood he knew whatever moved;..."
He continues on to say that at one time there were poachers on his land. He was not afraid to face them. He seems to be a stern but loving man. Exscript from "Theodore Rothke: Selected poems" Pg. 108 "He was the youngest son of a strange brood,
A Prussian who learned early to be rude
To fools and frauds: He does not put on airs
Who lived above a potting shed for years.
I think of him, I think of his men,
As close to him as any kith or kin.
Max Laurisch had the greenest thumb of all.
A floriest does not woo the beautiful:
He potted plants as if he hated them.
What root of his ever denied its stem?
When flowers grew, their bloom extended him." "Otto" "A shell arched under my toes,
Stirred up a whirl of silt
That riffled around my knees.
Whatever I owed to time
Slowed in my human form;
Sea water stood in my veins,
The elements I kept warm
Crumbled and flowed away,
And I knew I had been there before,
In that cold, granitic slime,
In the dark, in the rolling water." "River Incident" Exscript from "Theodore Rothke: Selected poems" Pg. 21 Opening my window, I feel a summers breeze,
Like leaves gently falling off the trees.
I hear the sound of wind, slowly bending the branches,
Starting off the day with so many chances. "Chances" I walk on the sidewalk,
Then turned 'rownd to see
A person near a tree.
I thought that I might know them.
So I raised my hand to wave,
But suddenly I relaized,
It was nothing but the shade. "The Shade" He was educated by his parents Throughout Theodore's adult life, he suffered many bouts of depression. He never told his wife Beatrice about them, but she was always there for him. She would help him with any task and encouraged him in his work. Without her, Theodore would not have published his book "The Far Field", which contained many of his great poems, one of which was 'Meditation at Oyster River'. Roethke, Theodore. Selected poems. New York: Library of America, 2005. Print. Bibliography Seager, Allan. The Glass House The life of Theodore Roethke. New York: McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1991. Print.
"Theodore Roethke." NNDB: Tracking the entire world. Web. 18 Oct. 2009. <http://www.nndb.com/people/585/000099288/>. "East Prussia: Definition from Answers.com." Answers.com - Online Dictionary, Encyclopedia and much more. Web. 18 Oct. 2009. <http://www.answers.com/topic/east-prussia>. What is universal about his writings is that nature, in any form, is beautiful and that every moment should be cherished. Theodore Roethke's storys and poems leave thoughts one cannot forget. It is this, his life on paper, that will be forever remembered by the those who knew him and those who knew his writings. Sadly, Theodore's life ended in 1963 when he had a heart attack in his friends swimming pool on Bainbridge Island, Washington. He died at age 55. My poems ":: wood s lot ::: "the fitful tracing of a portal"" WEB.NCF.CA. Web. 18 Oct. 2009. <http://web.ncf.ca/ek867/2009_05_16-31_archives.html>. END