Letters & Essays

All Letters & Essays

Show All   |   

Robie Macauley, Silence, Exile, and Cunning

  That year, we were going to France in June —small, out-ofthe-way places in Guyenne and the Dordogne —and so I decided to brush up my college French (se remettre le Français que jai apprit ...

Archibald MacLeish, The Selected Letters of Archibald MacLeish

Edited by Roy H. Winnick Archibald MacLeish died just two-and-a-half weeks before May 7, 1982, when he would have celebrated his ninetieth birthday. He had accomplished what Robert Frost once said it was his hope to ...

Norman Mailer, In Memoriam: Two Letters From Frank Crowther

May 13, 1976 Dear Norman, I just wrote Joe Flaherty a note, and he’ll probably call you. But, at the last minute (and this is surely that), I couldn’t check out without sending you a last ...

John Marquand, In Memoriam -- Sue Coward Marquand

  Sue Coward Marquand was a valued friend to many of the people on this magazine. She was in Paris in the summer of 1953 when the magazine was founded. Her cousin, Blair Puller, ran the Paris office in the 60s, ...

Caroline Marshall, Remembrance

Harry Mathews, Oulipo Sampler

Perverb The word perverb was invented by Paris Review editor Maxine Groffsky to describe the result obtained by crossing proverbs. If we join the first part of “All roads lead to Rome” to the ...

Peter Matthiessen, William Styron

André Maurois, A Note on Jorge Luis Borges

  Jorge Luis Borges is a great writer who has composed only little essays or short narratives. Yet they suffice for us to call him great because of their wonderful intelligence, their wealth of invention, ...

Mary McCarthy, Edmund Wilson

   Mary McCarthy was working or? the second volume of her “intellectual autobiography” when she died in October 1989. The first volume, which chronicles her life from age thirteen through her ...

Mary McCarthy, Role-Modeling

   Annie Wright, to be truthful, was not an “exclusive” school. That may have been why so many girls left, disappointed, after a year or so. In our class of 1929. for instance, what happened to ...

Jerome Mellquist, A Blurred Retrospective

Certain sentries of respectability still cannot accept Cubism. The Musée de l’Art Moderne has scoured the continents for the 231 items in its vast Cubist retrospective (1907-1914); it has assembled ...

W. S. Merwin, Flight Home

(In August 1956, the American poet and playwright W. S. Merwin flew home after seven years in Europe. The notes that follow are taken from a journal he kept at the time.) August 27, 1956, A barber shop in St. ...

W. S. Merwin, The Wake of the Blackfish: A Memoir of George Kirstein

  Late in March, in the year I would turn thirty, he wrote me a letter about sea monsters.   He and I had never met, and he addressed me, on the stationery of The Nation magazine, formally, with a ...

Michael Meyer, A Long Game of Scrabble: A Memoir of Graham Greene

  I saw a good deal of Graham Greene in the late forties and fifties. Once he mentioned that he was writing a film script. He told me the plot and it sounded pretty boring. I wondered who would want to see ...

Henry Miller, A Letter on Celine

   Collecting material on Celine forL’HERNE, Miss Lucia Evans wrote to Henry Miller & Jack Kerouac (who responded handsomely, with the letter reproduced opposite). Henry Miller, courteous as ever, ...

Czeslaw Milosz, Beginning with My Streets

Dictionary of Wilno Streets (1967)   Why should that city, defenseless and pure as the wedding necklace of a forgotten tribe, keep offering itself to me?   Like blue and red brown seeds beaded in Tuzigoot ...

Stephen Mitchell, from a new translation of the work of Rainer Maria Rilke

Little Tear-Vase Other vessels hold wine, other vessels hold oil inside the hollowed-out vault circumscribed by their clay. I, as a smaller measure, and as the slimmest of all, humbly hollow myself so that just a ...

Eugenio Montale, A Visit To Braque

  This Paris Review feature honors the memory of Eugenio Montale, who died on September 12, 1981. Widely acknowledged as the greatest Italian poet since Leopardi, Montale was also a noted journalist, a gifted ...

John Mulligan, Vincent Van Gogh -- The Big Picture

“I engage with the snark—every night after dark— In a dreamy delirious fight; I serve it with greens in those shadowy scenes, And I use it for striking a light... ” The Hunting of the ...

Natalia Danesi Murray, Janet Flanner: Letters to a Friend

Cynthia Ozick, A Rebuttal