|William Carlos Williams is buried in the
Hillside Cemetery, Lyndhurst, Bergen County, New Jersey, USA.
Grave of William Carlos Williams
While studying medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
Williams met, and became friends with, Ezra Pound. Pound exerted a profound influence on Williams' writing and subsequently, much of
his early poetry is Imagist in nature. However, as time went by, Williams
increasingly moved away from
favour of what he called Objectivism. He also attempted to create poetry which
took as its subject matter the everyday lives of ordinary Americans. He
famously described his approach to writing as 'no ideas but in things'.
For most of his life Williams worked as
a paediatrician in his home town of Rutherford, New Jersey. His work as a doctor
provided an inspiration for much of his literary output, giving him an insight
into what he referred to as: 'the secret gardens of the self '.
William Carlos Williams
During the 1920s and 1930's Williams' work was overshadowed by
that of T.S. Eliot, but during the 1950s and 1960s his
work received wider attention and influenced younger U.S. poets such as
Ginsberg and Robert Creeley.
In 1948 Williams suffered a heart attack - followed by a series
of strokes which prevented him from taking up the post of Poet Laureate in 1952.
Williams is now regarded, both in Europe and America, as one of
the most important of the Modernist poets.