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Existence of happy media comes to mind, though.....
 
IMHO it's somewhat crass to try to evaluate the works without anything at all of the life: both are in at least one big dimension one and the same.

On 13 November 2012 22:34, Ken Armstrong <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
  
>>> "[log in to unmask]" 11/13/12 2:06 PM >>>
As I age and reread the truly lasting poems I have come to conclude that poems should stand on their own, independent of the lives of the poets.  In other words, a reader can grasp great language without biographical reference.  This I am not deterred by the destruction of letters.  Consider what little of Shakespeare we have and how weighty and worthless was that massive volume last year of Larkin's every scribble and a few years past a similar scraps collection of Bishop.

    Amen. Not having Eliot's letters would be a deprivation of sorts (I'd be sorry not to have them for my own purposes), but not any greater a distraction than having them, and arguably, if not certainly, less a one. Does anyone seriously think a writer owes his letters and private papers to scholars? It would seem to turn the world on its head and make purblind critics and their meanderings the raison d'etre of literature.

 Ken A