RS Gwynn wrote: Some of VN's Harvard readings are here:

Only prose from PF though.  It appears that the Harvard library released a two-cassette compilation in 1988.  It's a shame there isn't more available online.
At the link I sent in my last posting (re: stang) you can hear VN read all of Canto Two. Seems pretty clear to me that he didn't want it to be seen as a bad poem. I agree with Sam Gwynn that any poem of such length is going to have fallow stretches. The complaint against sentimental moments in the poem reminds me of two quotations. The first is by Shade himself, who declares that he enjoys Shakespeare's "purple passages" "as a grateful mongrel on a spot of turf fouled by a Great Dane." (note to line 172). The other is from Richard Hugo, who says in Triggering Town that "All art that has endured has a quality we call schmaltz or corn. Our reaction against sentimentality embodied in Victorian and post-Victorian writing was so resolute writers came to believe that the further from sentimentality we got, the truer the art. That was a mistake. . . . if you are not risking sentimentality, you are not close to your inner self" (7).
Alexey's interesting note about the Russian word "shtanga" is, of course, more proof that Shade knew Russian! ;)

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