Gravitas and levitas
A Local Habitation: Poems and Homilies
by Peter Steele, edited by Sean Burke
Newman College, $39.95 hb, 168 pp, 9780734041708
Once in a seminar long ago, I heard Peter Steele quote one of Winston Churchill’s more disagreeable opinions, noting that Churchill was allowed to say such things ‘because he was Churchill’. This Churchillian self-definition, or certitude, or authority, or prowess, animates much of Steele’s own writings: Steele says this because he is Steele. Nor does he need to be disagreeable to do so.