"At first I felt extremely baffled -- only a sense of `motion' and the extremely good writing led me on -- but now after many re-readings I think I am getting to understand them better -- especially `The Recital' -- and some of `The System.' Actually, when I do enjoy passages or pages most, they remind me very oddly of Kierkegaard (whose name I don't remember how to spell right, I think). Although no theologian, probably no Christian, I've always been able to read him with the greatest pleasure -- and your THREE POEMS have now begun to give me the same sort of pleasure. I hope you don't mind my saying this -- that I shd. be saying something like they remind me of Yeats! Whatever -- you have really arrived at a personal, purely logical, and deep -- as well as beautiful way of saying things. I'm not a critic and have difficulties expressing myself about poems -- but I'm sure this book is very important -- as they say all the time, of course-- but really, as well."
-- Elizabeth Bishop
(typed letter dated March 5th, 1973, from Sixty Brattle Street, Cambridge 02138)