When Helen Pinkerton died on December 28, 2017, she left behind a body of verse that, though modestly compact, has great grace and intelligence. However, while her poetry has never lacked for serious admirers, it has not received recognition commensurate with its excellence. In the following pages, I want to explain why she deserves new readers. She was wonderfully unusual—formidably thoughtful and direct, both in person and on the page. She also had a fascinating life, and to the extent that her life illuminates her poems, I hope to tell her story, blending, so to speak, biography with literary appreciation.
As they say, read the whole thing.