John Berryman Poems
- Dream Song 1: Huffy Henry Hid ... Huffy Henry hid the...
- The Ball Poem What is the boy now, who has lost his ...
- Dream Song 14: Life, Friends, ... Life, friends, is ...
- Dream Song 29: There Sat Down,...
- The Traveller They pointed me out on the highway, and they ...
- Dream Song 113: Or Amy Vladeck...
- Dream Song 10: There Were Stra...
John Allyn Berryman was an American poet and scholar, born in McAlester, Oklahoma. He was a major figure in American poetry in the second half of the 20th century and was considered a key figure in the Confessional school of poetry. His best-known work is The Dream Songs.
Life and Career
John Berryman was born and raised in Oklahoma until the age of 10, when his father, John Smith, a banker, and his mother, Martha, who was a schoolteacher, moved to Tampa, Florida. In 1926, in Florida, when the poet was twelve, his father shot and killed himself just outside his son's bedroom window. Berryman was haunted by his father's suicide for the rest of his life and would later ... more »
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Quotationsmore quotations »
''The artist is extremely lucky who is presented with the worst possible ordeal which will not actually kill him. At that point, he's in business.''John Berryman (1914-1972), U.S. poet. Interview in Writers at Work, Fourth Series, ed. George Plimpton (1976).
Dream Song 1: Huffy Henry Hid The Day
Huffy Henry hid the day,
unappeasable Henry sulked.
I see his point,—a trying to put things over.
It was the thought that they thought
they could do it made Henry wicked & away.
But he should have come out and talked.
All the world like a woolen lover
once did seem on Henry's side.
Then came a departure.
Thereafter nothing fell out as it might or ought.
I don't see how Henry, pried
open for all the world to see, survived.
What he has now to say is a long
wonder the world can bear & be.
Once in a sycamore I was glad
all at ...