Robert Kelly is one of the major and most prolific American poets of our time. Between 1961 when his first collection, Armed Descent, was published by Hawk’s Well Press, and Seaspel, brought out in 2019 by Lunar Chandelier Collective, Kelly has published some 66+ books of poetry as well as 14 volumes of prose, including novels, short stories, & essays. A City Full of Voices is the companion volume to the 2014 A Voice Full of Cities, the Collected Essays of Robert Kelly, also published by Contra Mundum Press.
This book gathers a wide range of commentaries — from single-phrase response to full-blown essay, personal meditation & various forms of book reviews — on Kelly’s monumental oeuvre. It covers early reception by a previous generation of poets — such as Charles Olson and Robert Creeley — welcoming Kelly among their company, mid-career assessments via an array of compañeros & compañeras for whom Kelly’s work has been sustenance and inspiration over many decades, and goes all the way to critical investigations by those younger readers & students of the work coming to Robert Kelly’s poetry today.