Robert Bly lives on a farm in his native state of Minnesota. He edited The Seventies magazine, which he founded as The Fifties and in the next decade called The Sixties. In 1966, with David Ray, he organized American Writers Against the Vietnam War. The Light Around the Body, which won the National Book Award in 1968, was strongly critical of the war in Vietnam and of American foreign policy. Since publication of Iron John: A Book About Men (1990), a response to the women's movement, Bly has been immensely popular, appearing on talk shows and advising men to retrieve their primitive masculinity through wildness. Bly is also a translator of Scandinavian literature, such as Twenty Poems of Tomas Transtromer. Through the Sixties Press and the Seventies Press, he introduced little-known European and South American poets to American readers. His magazines have been the center of a poetic movement involving the poets Donald Hall, Louis Simpson, and James Wright.
Pablo Neruda (1904-73), one of the renowned poets of the twentieth century, was born in Ferral, Chile. He shared the World Peace Prize with Paul Robeson & Pablo Picasso in 1950, and he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1971.
Primarily a poet and one of Latin America's finest of the twentieth century, Vallejo also wrote several novels and plays with a strong social content. His situation as a mestizo of part Indian blood, his humble social background, and the political and social discrimination to which he was subjected because of these factors, created the profound psychological tensions and alienation from society that mark his work. His work is permeated with a sense of the dignity of the oppressed Indian and a spirit of rebellion. In his first volume, The Black Heralds (1918), he used the techniques of symbolism to express bitterness at his suffering and condition of isolation. Trilce (1922) is one of the most original works of modern poetry, with an innovative syntax and structure that transcend normal logical rules to express the poet's feeling of solitude and the helplessness of oppressed peoples. After the publication of Trilce, Vallejo moved to Paris, where he lived in poverty and was harshly treated because of his political opinions. In poetry of a simpler structure and form, his posthumously published Human Poems (1939) and Spain, Let This Cup Pass from Me (1939) reveal his anguish over the Spanish civil war and his sense of solidarity with combatants for peace and freedom.