Many thanks to the poet and philosopher John Koethe for applying Ockham’s razor to the Hylas reference in Wilbur’s poem, and reminding us that Berkeley’s “Three Dialogues” is the likely source of the allusion. I went far afield in linking the image to the Argonautica, without, I think, doing violence to Wilbur’s theme. I maintain that by the end of the poem Wilbur has identified with Hylas’ tree, fearing that he “Will fall to nothing and without a sound.” I do wonder if Berkeley named Hylas for that bold Argonaut who is the symbol of impartial investigation.

 

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