Travels with Ezra
At graduation, a few scholarly patrons flung money at me from afar, and I went to Italy to chart the constellation of Ezra Pound's allusions, icy and distant in his Cantos alone. I brought Ezra everywhere for a year, his books bundled deep in my backpack, like captives held behind the glass of a departing phaeton. I visited towns for a stanza—sometimes a line-treating the annotations of biographers and fellow travelers as chalk marks on a fence: Go here, it is very beautiful. Don't go there, it is nearly destroyed.