13 Feb JD Salinger
If, in the line of duty, I should incidentally titillate a few young people’s interest in Chinese and Japanese poetry, it would be very god news to me. At all events, let the young person please know, if he doesn’t already, that a goodish amount of first-class Chinese poetry has been translated into English, with much fidelity and spirit, by several distinguished people; Witter Bynner and Lionel Giles come most readily to mind. The best short Japanese poems – particularly haiku, but senryu, too – can be read with special satisfaction when R.H. Blyth has been at them. Blyth is sometimes perilous, naturally, since he’s a highhanded old poem himself, but he’s also sublime – and who goes to poetry for safety anyway?