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John Koethe’s ‘The Swimmer’ Recalls the Promise of the Past

Jelly Dude
Chappaquiddick Island, Edgartown, Massachusetts.

John Koethe has had many intellectual interests in his years and many have found their way into his poetry.

Koethe is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy Emeritus at UW-Milwaukee, and his interest in philosophy shines through in his latest collection of poetry, The Swimmer. Physics, advanced math and literature also make appearances his poems.

Koethe notes that many of his poems reflect a look back at how things have changed during his lifetime, and not always for the better.

“Disillusion might be another term, but without any pejorative connotations,” he says. “… [I’m] basically a romantic poet, but I don’t believe any of the illusions that motivate romanticism.”

Koethe will talk about The Swimmer and read from it Friday evening at Boswell Book Company.