Donald Hall: A Life Dedicated to Language and Literature

Donald Hall

Born on this day September 20, 1928, Donald Hall, a venerable figure in the world of American literature, dedicated his life to the cultivation and celebration of language and literature. His diverse body of work, which includes poetry, essays, and children’s books, reflects a profound understanding and appreciation for the power of words. Hall’s contributions to literature were widely recognized, earning him numerous awards and accolades, including the prestigious Robert Frost Medal.

Hall’s poetry, known for its evocative imagery and emotional depth, explores themes of love, loss, and the natural world. His essays, on the other hand, often delve into his personal experiences and observations. These works not only reveal Hall’s adeptness at various forms of written expression but also demonstrate his ability to infuse each piece with a distinctive voice and perspective.

Beyond poetry and essays, Hall also ventured into the realm of children’s literature. His children’s books, filled with whimsical narratives and engaging characters, showcase another facet of his literary talent. These works not only entertain young readers but also instill in them a love for language and storytelling.

Among his many achievements, Hall was awarded the Robert Frost Medal in 1991 for his distinguished contribution to American poetry. This award is particularly significant as it underscores Hall’s remarkable influence in shaping and advancing the landscape of American literature.

Donald Hall’s life was truly a testament to his unwavering commitment to language and literature. His diverse body of work – from poetry to essays to children’s books – provides a rich legacy that continues to inspire readers and writers alike. Hall’s dedication to his craft serves as a shining example for all who value the power and beauty of words.

The Baseball Players

Against the bright
grass the white-knickered
players, tense, seize,
and attend. A moment
ago, outfielders
and infielders adjusted
their clothing, glanced
at the sun and settled
forward, hands on knees;
the pitcher walked back
of the hill, established
his cap and returned;
the catcher twitched
a forefinger; the batter
rotated his bat
in a slow circle. But now
they pause: wary,
exact, suspended—
abiding moonrise
lightens the angel
of the overgrown
hardens, and Walter Blake
Adams, who died
at fourteen, waits
under the footbridge.

-Donald Hall

Curated by Jennifer

1 comment

  1. sad.

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