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Frank O̓hara's “Lorcaescas”

Frank O̓hara's “Lorcaescas”

(p.122) 6 Frank O̓hara's “Lorcaescas”
Apocryphal Lorca
Jonathan Mayhew
University of Chicago Press

This chapter examines the poetry of Frank O'Hara, identifying points of convergence between him and Lorca. It suggests that O'Hara is a more “Lorquian” figure than either Robert Bly or James Wright. He belongs, in at least one or two facets of his work, to the tradition of bardic, charismatic twentieth-century figures like Mayakovsky, Lorca, and Ginsberg. This connection may be just as arbitrary as the conventional linking of Lorca to the deep image poets. The choice of interpretive frameworks is not natural or given, and literary traditions are always somewhat arbitrary, constructed after the fact in a selective process. At the very least, though, an exploration of O'Hara's Lorquismo has a heuristic value, showing that the divisions between rival schools of contemporary American poetry are not as clearcut as they might appear.

Keywords:   Frank O'Hara, American poetry, American poets, duende, surrealism, Federico García Lorca, Lorquismo

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