Sons of Ezra: British Poets and Ezra Pound is about the impact of Ezra Pound upon British poets writing today. It is the story of a presence, then of a voice and latterly of an idea. When Pound left London in 1920 after a stay of 12 years, his early ascendancy had waned, and during the 1930s his voice sounded more remotely in British ears. The first poet represented here, Edwin Morgan, began to read Pound towards the end of that decade. Pound's subsequent political reputation has meant that students now coming to university, born after his death in 1972, have not opened a book of his poems in the way that several who testify here remember doing with pleasure. There was a revival of British interest in Pound with the publication of the Pisan Cantos, and then in the 1960s and early 1970s, but since then there has been little public opportunity for British poets to reflect on Pound. Michael Alexander and James McGonigal invited British poets to whom Pound has meant something to reflect, and to testify.
To the older writers he was a presence, but the youngest contributors were born at the time that Pound fell silent about 1960, and to them he is an historical figure, the greatest poetic influence since Wordsworth, whose ambition seems an example to avoid as much as to follow.