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Monday, January 23, 2023

'Nobody's special property'


“The English language is nobody's special property. It is the property of the imagination: it is the property of the language itself.” – Derek Walcott


Born in Saint Lucia on this date in 1930, Walcott was the 1992 winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature.  Also the recipient of the Obie Award for his play Dream on Monkey Mountain (he wrote 20 plays) and a MacArthur Foundation "genius" award, Walcott died in 2017. 


 Walcott taught for many years in England and earned the T. S. Eliot Prize for his remarkable book of poetry White Egrets.   He once noted about his poetic writing, “If you know what you are going to write when you're writing a poem, it's just going to be average.” 


His poems are not.  For powerful and poignant reads, check out  “A City’s Death by Fire” or “A Far Cry From Africa.”

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