Theodore Roethke

What have I done, dear God, to deserve this perpetual feeling that I'm almost ready to begin something really new?
—Theodore Roethke, Straw for the Fire, 206
This weekend I went to see First Class, David Wagoner's play about Theodore Roethke. Although several folks had recommended it highly, I was reluctant thinking it might be pure hagiography, given Roethke's continuing influence around here. (There were still stories about him circulating when I started graduate work at UW.)

The play is really quite wonderful, showing, so far as I know, all sides of Roethke, the brilliant teacher as well as the drunken asshole at the faculty party. It also captures perfectly that weird combination of challenge and encouragement that constitutes the writing workshop.

If you're in Seattle and you haven't seen it, do go. The play closes on August 26th.


Blogger Peter said...

I am going on Sunday with a group of friends. Looking forward!

13/8/07 20:31  

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