How Did Theodore Roethke's Life Influence His Poetry

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Amongst some of the greatest teachers of poetry in the 20th century it is not surprising that Theodore Roethke would be one of the names that is normally quoted. Some of the greatest American poets of the late 20th century have been inspired by his common theatrical classroom style and his passion. Suffering from a spells mental illness that were undiagnosed, Roethke also has an obsession for a lust for life. Although Roethke wrote many diverse body of works, it was "The Waking." that won him 1954 Pulitzer Prize for his poetry Some of his other works famous literature includes "Open House" and "The Far Field." Even today his work still continues to inspire others. Despite his difficult childhood and his fight with manic depression, Roethke’s work of…show more content…
Growing up as a child, Roethke spent the majority of his time in his father’s greenhouses. During that time, Roethke discovered his love for nature as he challenged his imagination. Roethke was able to take the world of the greenhouse to the “inner world” of man by linking together flowers, creatures, and plants. For Roethke the greenhouse was symbol of unsureness “both heaven and hell” (Poetry Foundation 6). Also related to the greenhouse were the memories of Roethke’s father, who passed away when he was only 14 years old. This gave him the opportunity to develop a unique writing style which bloomed into a naturalistic style of poetry. Roethke had a talent for analyzing the world and identifying things that would normally go unnoticed to most people. His main source of inspiration and imagery was drawn from the world of nature. In Roethke’s first volume “Open House” most of his poems were protected in their expression. These collections of poems were Roethke’s first pieces of work, so he
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