The CPR editors recently received the following note from the Italian scholar Massimo Bacigalupo:
Dear Scholars of Ezra Pound and Modernism:
I thought you’d like to know that the house where Olga Rudge and Ezra Pound
lived in Sant’Ambrogio di Zoagli, above Rapallo, is for sale. Only half of it,
to be precise.
If any of you is interested I can put you in touch with the current owner, who
hosted us very courteously during our Rapallo Conferences.
You should be warned, however, that real estate on the Riviera is expensive.
Rest assured, we are phoning the ghost of New Directions founder James Laughlin right now for a mortgage loan.
Seriously, it’ s not too late for someone to preserve “the Ezuversity.” This should be one of American literature’s great shrines.
Please contact us if you would like more details.
I trust someone has forwarded this letter to the Poetry Foundation. They’re the ones with the money. And purchase of EP’s house by the publishers of Poetry would be fitting. In Poetry’s early years, Harriet Monroe provided a home for Ezra and his friends (one of several, to be sure) in her magazine’s pages; now, posthumously, he can return the favor by giving the magazine and all it represents a Mediterranean outpost. Many of us, I’m sure, would gladly show up and drink a glass of chianti in their honor.
Alas, I lack the financial resources to purchase Pound’s Rapallo home, though I can dream. But recently, browsing some real estate websites, I discovered that the early-19th-century Greek Revival farmhouse in Newcastle, Maine, where Robert Lowell and Jean Stafford once lived is for sale for what seems to me a most reasonable price:
The built-in bookcases are a major selling point; indeed, a necessity for this bibliophile.
Should I find myself the inhabitant of this fine property one of these days, I’ll invite the CPR editors and contributors to visit. I might even, after a period of immense silence, return to the writing of the poems and the odd review.