Swedenborg, born into a prominent family of good standing in Swedish society, became a versatile, distinguished scientist. In neurology, and out of step with the orthodoxy of his day, he showed that the cerebral cortex was the anatomical and physiological locus of the mind. He forsook his scientific studies to develop a cosmology that integrated nature and natural phenomena, including scientific discoveries, with his concept of Christianity. In so doing, it is argued, he dug the grave of his neurological propositions.
I have been a most unappreciative reader of contemporary verse. For years I picked up books published by the universities, or magazines with state funding, which is the primary way our economy will publish poetry. Now anyone who bothers to read poetry is wishing to be enlightened emotionally—to be touched, to be moved. But as a rule, to a maddening degree, I was only moved to ask “What does this mean?” or “Who cares?” or most distressing of all “Why is this poetry?”