- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 21, 2005

NEW YORK (AP) — Stanley Burnshaw, a publisher and literary critic who edited the works of his friend Robert Frost, died Sept. 16 on Martha’s Vineyard, Mass. He was 99.

Mr. Burnshaw, whose literary career spanned more than seven decades, also won critical acclaim for his own poems and books.

Five of his poems were published in 1927 in “The American Caravan: A Yearbook of American Literature.”

His first book, “Andre Spire and His Poetry,” was published in 1933. He published his final book, a poetry anthology, in 2002.

Mr. Burnshaw published and edited work by Frost and wrote a biography of him that was published in 1986.

He also famously feuded with poet Wallace Stevens, whom he described in a review as “a man who, having lost his footing, now scrambles to stand up and keep his balance.”

Stevens returned the favor with a poem titled “Mr. Burnshaw and the Statue.”

Born in New York City to Eastern European immigrants, Mr. Burnshaw worked in advertising for a steel mill after graduating from the University of Pittsburgh in 1925.

In 1927, he traveled to France to study before returning to the United States to earn a master’s degree from Cornell University.

Unable to find a teaching job, he became an editor at the New Masses, a communist weekly.

Although never a member of the Communist Party, he wrote a book of leftist poems and a play that explored the effects of technology distorted by greed.

Survivors include his wife, Susan Copen Oken.


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