The art of portraiture in poetry is traceable from the Latin poets and Chaucer via Goldsmith, Wordsworth and Browning, to the modern era of Rimbaud, Cavafy, Auden, Lowell and Hofmann. Poetry is an art form which encourages introspection, so it is a welcome break to find these poets looking outward, fondly or otherwise, in homage or in satire, at their fellow performers on the human stage. Here, you may find yourself rubbing shoulders with the likes of Elvis Presley, Oscar Wilde, and the Duke of Buckingham, or buttonholed by intriguing gatecrashers to the virtual party. Who is Butch Weldy, for instance? And what did become of Waring?

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