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Theodore Roethke
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    (May 25, 1908-August 1, 1963)
    Born in Saginaw, Michigan
    Wrote poems ‘The Lost Son,’ ‘My Papa’s Waltz,’ ‘The Waking,’ ‘I Knew a Woman,’ ‘Cuttings,’ ‘Elegy for Jane,’ ‘Infirmity’ and ‘In a Dark Time’
    He was a sickly child.
    He drank bootleg liquor as a teenager to impress his peers.
    He started law school but dropped out.
    While employed at Lafayette College, he had a breakdown in front of the dean (1935).
    This incident cost him his teaching position.
    He became sexually involved with several of his students.
    A dubious rumor has him drinking while swimming the afternoon he died.
    When he was 15, his father died of cancer and his uncle committed suicide.
    He was the first in his family to attend university.
    He is famed for his hypnotic, natural imagery.
    He used memories of his father’s greenhouse in much of his poetry.
    When he learned he won a prize in the middle of a class, he took his students out for drinks.
    He became close friends with Dylan Thomas.
    He died of a heart attack while swimming in a friend’s pool.
    The pool was later converted into a Zen rock garden in his honor.

Credit: Georgina

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