Wallace Stevens & Zen

  1. The Zen stories repeated in this paper, the references to Zen scriptures and the ideas of Dogen, and the remarks made about koan study can be found in or are derived from these principal works: Zen Flesh, Zen Bones, compiled by Paul Reps (Garden City, New York: Anchor Books, no date). The Blue Cliff Record, trans. Thomas and J. C. Cleary (Boulder, Colorado: Shambhala Books, 1977), three volumes. Three works by D. T. Suzuki: An Introduction to Zen Buddhism (New York: Grove Press, 1964); Studies in Zen (New York: Dell Publishing, 1955); Manual of Zen Buddhism (New York: Grove Press, 1960). Isshu Muira and Ruth Sasaki, The Zen Koan (New York: Harcourt Brace, no date). Records of Things Heard (The Shobogenzo-Zuimonki of Dogen), trans. Thomas Cleary (Boulder, Colorado: Prajna Press, 1980). Robert Aitken, Taking The Path of Zen (San Francisco: North Point Press, 1982). Three Pillars of Zen, compiled and ed. Philip Kapleau (Boston: Beacon Press, 1965). In conformity with present usage, I have avoided footnotes except where they are most necessary.
  2. Richard Brautigan, Rommel Drives into Egypt (New York: Dell Publishing, 1970), p.10.
  3. Richard Brautigan, The Pill Versus the Springhill Mine Disaster (New York: Dell Publishing, 1968), p. 43.
  4. Robert Aitken, A Zen Wave (Tokyo: John Weatherhill, 1978).
  5. R. H. Blyth, Zen in English Literature and Oriental Classics (Tokyo: The Hokuseido Press, 1942).
  6. The Eastern Buddhist (Spring 1980), vol. XIII, no. 1, pp. 46–51. Reprinted in The Wallace Stevens Journal (Fall 1982), vol. VI, no. 3 & 4, pp. 69–73.
  7. All poems by Wallace Stevens that are quoted and discussed in this paper can be found in The Collected Poems of Wallace Stevens (New York: Knopf, 1968): “The Great Plant,” p. 506; “The Snow Man,” pp. 9–10; “The Plain Sense of Things,” pp. 502–503; and “A Quiet Normal Life,” p. 523.
  8. Samuel French Morse, Wallace Stevens: Poetry as Life (New York, 1970), p. 118.

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former literature professor (San Diego State, UCSD, UCLA, UConn, NUI Galway) and literary journalist (NYTimes, LATimes, & elsewhere)

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Jerry Griswold

Jerry Griswold

former literature professor (San Diego State, UCSD, UCLA, UConn, NUI Galway) and literary journalist (NYTimes, LATimes, & elsewhere)