Strangers to Us All Lawyers and Poetry

Wallace Stevens

(1879-1955)
Connecticut

"After all, what is there odd about being a lawyer and being or doing something else at the same time?" [Wallace Stevens, in a letter to Harvey Breit dated July 27, 1942, in Holly Stevens (ed.), Letters of Wallace Stevens 412-413, at 412 (Berkeley, California: University of California: University of California Press, 1996)(1966)]. In a follow-up letter to Breit, dated July 29th, Stevens continuing his explanations for not agreeing to being photographed and interviewed for an article by Breit about poets and their everyday work, Stevens observes that "one is not a lawyer one minute and a poet the next. You said in your first letter something about a point at which I turned from being a lawyer to writing poetry. There never was any such a point. I have always been intensely interested in poetry, even when I was a boy." Stevens goes on to say: "No one could be more earnest about anything than I am about poetry, but this is not due to any event or exercise of will; it is a natural development of an interest that always existed. Moreover, I don't have a separate mind for legal work and another for writing poetry. I do each with my whole mind . . . ." [Id. 413-414]

Wallace Stevens
Poetry Foundation

Wallace Stevens
Modern American Poetry

Wallace Stevens
Spotlight on Voices & Visions

Wallace Stevens
Academy of American Poets

Wallace Stevens (1879-1955)
Perspectives in American Literature

Wallace Stevens
Wikipedia Encyclopedia

Wallace Stevens
Poet Seers

Wallace Stevens (1879-1955)
Petri Liukkonen, Pegasos

[Photo]

Wallace Stevens
Modernism—American Salons

Hartford Friends and Enemies of Wallace Stevens

Wallace Stevens Walking Tour

Estate of Mind
excerpts of poetry by with drawings
by Mark Napie
r

Wallace Stevens

Wallace Stevens Journal

Wallace Stevens (1879-1955)
Heath Online Instructor's Guide

Wallace Stevens
Professor Alan Firies

Teaching Wallace Stevens' Poetry
Heath Anthology of American Literature
Instructor's Guide

The Dao of Wallace Stevens
a blog

Wallace Stevens's Manuscript
As If in The Dump

Wallace Stevens's Alleged Deathbed Conversion

New York Times Obituary

The Emperor of Hartford
New York Times
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Reading and Writing: An Explorer of Earth
Anatole Broyard, New York Times
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Poems

[A High-toned Old Christian Woman] [Of Modern Poetry] [In Battle] [Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird] [The Idea of Order at Key West] [Not Ideas About the Thing But the Thing Itself] [Not Ideas About the Thing but the Thing Itself] [The Comedian as the Letter C] [Peter Quince at the Clavier ] [Peter Quince at the Clavier] [Anecdote of the Jar] [Gray Room] [Sunday Morning] [The Emperor of Ice-cream] [The Emperor of Ice-cream] [The Snow Man] [The Snow Man] [Sunday Morning] [In the Carolinas] [The Man Whose Pharynx Was Bad] [Disillusionment of Ten O'clock] [Disillusionment of Ten O'clock] [Bantams in the Pine-Woods] [Metaphors of a Magnifico] [Nomad Exquisite] [The River of Rivers in Connecticut] [Looking Across the Fields and Watching the Birds Fly] [Poem Written at Morning] [Poems]

Audio

[Poetry Foundation: Wallace Stevens] [Wallace Stevens Reads Four Poems]
[Wallace Stevens reads "The Idea of Order at Key West"]
[Wallace Stevens reads "Final Soliloquy Of The Interior Paramour"]
[Wallace Stevens reads "So & So Reclining on Her Couch"]
[Public Domain Poems of Wallace Stevens] ["Snow Man"]
["The Emperor Of Ice-Cream"]

["Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird" read by Tom O'Bedlam]

Videos

The World of Wallace Stevens

Wallace Stevens as an American Poet
Helen Vendler, 2012, at Stanford

Helen Vendler on the Recordings of Wallace Stevens
Helen Vendler at the Woodberry Poetry Library, Harvard

Wallace Stevens: Words That Matter
Poetry reading and discussion with Susan Howe and Joan Richardson, 2011

Wallace Stevens, New York and Modernism

A Lecture on Wallace Stevens
Langdon Hammer, Yale [Pt2, a guest lecturer, Marie Borroff]

Harold Bloom recites Wallace Stevens' "Tea at the Palace of Hoon"

Bill Murray Reads Wallace Stevens

Al Filreis teaches "The Snow Man" by Wallace Stevens :: Pt2

Poetry

Wallace Stevens, Harmonium (New York: Knopf, 1923)(New York: St. Martin's Press, 1975)

_____________, Ideas of Order (New York: Alcestis Press, 1935)(New York: Knopf, 1936)

_____________, Owl's Clover (New York: Alcestis Press, 1936)

_____________, The Man With the Blue Guitar and Other Poems (New York: Knopf, 1937)(Knopf, 1952)(London: Petersburg Press, 1977)

_____________, Parts of the World (New York: Knopf, 1942)

_____________, Notes Towards a Supreme Fiction (Cummington, Massachusetts: Cummington Press, 1942)

_____________, Esthétique du Mal (Cummington, Massachusetts: Cummington Press, 1945)

_____________, Three Academic Pieces (Cummington, Massachusetts: Cummington Press, 1947)

_____________, Transport to Summer (New York: Knopf, 1947)

_____________, A Primitive Like an Orb (Pawet, Vermont: Banyan Press, 1948)

_____________, Auroras of Autumn (New York: Knopf, 1950)

_____________, Selected Poems (London: Faber and Faber Limited, 1953)

_____________, Collected Poems (New York: Knopf, 1954)(Knopf, 1955)(Franklin Center, Pennsylvania: Franklin Library, 1982)(London-Boston: Faber and Faber, 1984)(New York: Vintage Books, 1990)

_____________, Opus Posthumous (New York: Knopf, 1957)

Holly Stevens (ed.), The Palm at the End of the Mind: Selected Poems and Play (New York: Knopf, 1971)(New York: Vintage Books, 1972)

Wallace Stevens, Collected Poetry and Prose (New York: Library Of America, 1997)

Letters

Holly Stevens (ed.), Letters of Wallace Stevens (New York: Knopf, 1966)

Beverly Coyle and Alan Filreis (eds.), Secretaries of the Moon: The Letters of Wallace Stevens & José Rodríguez Feo (Durham: Duke University Press, 1986)

Writings

Wallace Stevens, The Necessary Angel (New York: Knopf, 1951)(New York: Vintage Books, 1966)

_____________, The Relations Between Poetry and Painting (New York: Museum of Modern Art, 1951)

Holly Stevens (ed.), Souvenirs and Prophecies: The Young Wallace Stevens (New York: Knopf, 1977)(1976)

Wallace Stevens, Collected Poetry and Prose (New York: Library Of America, 1997)

Bibliography (Books): Stevens the Lawyer

Thomas Grey, The Wallace Stevens Case: Law and the Practice of Poetry (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1991)

David A. Skeel, Jr., Notes Toward an Aesthetics of legal Pragmatism, 78 Cornell L. Rev. 84 (1992)(reviewing Thomas Grey, The Wallace Stevens Case: Law and the Practice of Poetry)

Richard A. Posner, Law and Literature 144-147 (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, rev. ed., 1998)(1988)

Bibliography (Articles): Stevens the Lawyer

Thomas C. Grey, Hear the Other Side: Wallace Stevens and Pragmatist Legal Theory, 63 S. Cal. L. Rev. 1569 (1990)

Daniel J. Kornstein, The Double Life of Wallace Stevens: Is Law Ever the "Necessary Angel" of Creative Art?, 41 N.Y.L. Sch. L. Rev. 1187 (1997)

Steven T. Knight, "Philanthropists Among the Lawyers": The Law School Journal of Wallace Stevens, (2) ALSA Forum 51 (1979) [online text]

David Lavery, Imagination and Insurance: Wallace Stevens and Benjamin Lee Whorf at the Hartford, 24 Legal Studies Forum 481 (2002) [online text]

Tim Nolan, Poetry and the Practice of Law, 46 S. Dak. L. Rev. 677 (2001) [online text]

Elizabeth Rosen, The Lawyer in the Poet: Thoughts on Stevens' Use of Legal Terminology, 19 (1) Wallace Stevens J. 3 (1995)

Essays about Stevens' Poetry

Description without a Sense of Place
Alan Filreis, Wallace Stevens and the Actual World (Princeton University Press, 1991)

"Beyond the Rhetorician's Touch:" Stevens's Painterly Abstractions
Alan Filreis, American Literary History (1992)

Imagination/Reality: Wallace Stevens' Harmonium and the Visual Arts

Wallace Stevens and His Poem "The Snow Man"

Bibliography

Wallace Stevens Bibliography
by
Gerard Nielsen

Alan Filreis, Wallace Stevens and the Actual World (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1991)

James Baird, The Dome and the Rock: Structure in the Poetry of Wallace Stevens (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, 1968)

Milton J. Bates, Wallace Stevens: A Mythology of Self (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1985)

Lucy Beckett, Wallace Stevens (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1974)

Michel Benamou, Wallace Stevens and the Symbolist Imagination (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1972)

William W. Bevis, Mind of Winter: Wallace Stevens, Meditation, and Literature (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: University of Pittsburgh Press, 1988)

Richard Allen Blessing, Wallace Stevens' "Whole Harmonium" (Syracuse, New York: Syracuse University Press, 1970)

Harold Bloom, Wallace Stevens: The Poems of Our Climate (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1977)

George Bornstein, Transformations of Romanticism in Yeats, Eliot, and Stevens (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1976)

Marie Borroff (ed.), Wallace Stevens: A Collection of Critical Essays (Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, 1965)

Peter Brazeau, Parts of a World: Wallace Stevens Remembered—An Oral Biography (New York: Random House, 1983)

Ashley Brown & Robert S. Haller (eds.), The Achievement of Wallace Stevens: A Critical Anthology (Philadelphia: Lippincott, 1962)

Merle E. Brown, Wallace Stevens: The Poem as Act (Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1970)

William A. Burney, Wallace Stevens (New York: Twayne Publishers,1968)(New Haven: College & University Press, 1968)

Robert Buttel, Wallace Stevens: The Making of Harmonium (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1967)

Thomas B. Byers, What I Cannot Say: Self, Word, and World in Whitman, Stevens, and Merwin (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1989)

Bonnie Costello, "Effects of an Analogy: Wallace Stevens and Painting," in Albert Gelpi (ed.) Wallace Stevens: The Poetics of Modernism (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1985

Helen Deese and Steven G. Axelrod (eds.), Critical Essays on Wallace Stevens (Boston: G.K. Hall, 1988)

Margaret Dickie, Lyric Contingencies: Emily Dickinson and Wallace Stevens (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1991)

Frank A. Doggett, Wallace Stevens: The Making of the Poem (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1980)

_____________, Stevens: Poetry of Thought (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, 1966)

Frank Doggett & Robert Buttell (eds.), Wallace Stevens: A Celebration (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1980)

Jerome M. Edelstein, Wallace Stevens: A Descriptive Bibliography (Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press, 1973)

John J. Enck, Wallace Stevens: Images and Judgments (Carbondale, Illinois: Southern Illinois Press, 1964)

Alan Filreis, Wallace Stevens and the Actual World (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1991)

Barbara Fisher, Wallace Stevens: The Intensest Rendezvous (Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1990)

Austin Fowler, The Poetry of Wallace Stevens (New York: Monarch Press, 1965)

Daniel Fuchs, The Comic Spirit of Wallace Stevens (Durham: Duke University Press, 1963)

Albert Gelpi (ed.), Wallace Stevens: The Poetics of Modernism (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990)(1985)

Mark Halliday, Stevens and the Interpersonal (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1991)

Thomas J. Hines, The Later Poetry of Wallace Stevens: Phenomenological Parallels with Husserl and Heidegger (Lewisburg, Pennsylvania: Bucknell University Press, 1976)

Frank Kermode, Wallace Stevens (New York: Grove Press, 1961)

Edward Kessler, Images of Wallace Stevens (New Brunswick, New Jersey: Rutgers University Press, 1972)

George S. Lensing, Wallace Stevens: A Poet's Growth (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1986)

Frank Lentricchia, The Gaiety of Language: An Essay on the Radical Poetics of W.B. Yeats and Wallace Stevens (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1968)

_____________, The Modernist Quartet (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1994)

B.J. Leggett, Early Stevens: The Nietzschean Intertext (Durham: Duke University Press, 1992)

A. Walton Litz, Introspective Voyager: The Poetic Development of Wallace Stevens (New York: Oxford University Press, 1972)

___________, Wallace Stevens: The Poetry of Earth (Washington: Library of Congress, 1981)

Thomas F. Lombardi, Wallace Stevens and the Pennsylvania Keystone: The Influence of Origins on His Life and Poetry (Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania: Susquehanna University Press, 1996)

James Longenbach, Wallace Stevens: The Plain Sense of Things (New York: Oxford University Press, 1991)

Glen G. MacLeod, Wallace Stevens and Company: The Harmonium Years 1913-1923 (Ann Arbor: UMI Research Press, 1983)

______________, Wallace Stevens and Modern Art: From the Armory Show to Abstract Expressionism (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1993)

Janet McCann, Wallace Stevens Revisited: "The Celestial Possible" (New York: Twayne Publishers, 1995)

Peter L. McNamara (ed.), Critics on Wallace Stevens: Readings in Literary Criticism (Coral Gables, Florida: University of Miami Press, 1972)

Diane W. Middlebrook, Walt Whitman and Wallace Stevens (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1974)

Adalaide K. Morris, Wallace Stevens: Imagination and Faith (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1974)

Samuel F. Morse, Wallace Stevens: Poetry as Life (New York: Pegasus, 1970)

_____________, Wallace Stevens: A Preliminary Checklist of His Published Writings, 1898-1954 (New Haven: Yale University Library, 1954)

_____________, et. al., Wallace Stevens Checklist and Bibliography of Stevens Criticism (Denver: Alan Swallow, 1963)

Eugene P. Nassar, Wallace Stevens: An Anatomy of Figuration (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1965)

William Van O'Connor, The Shaping Spirit: A Study of Wallace Stevens (Chicago: Regnery, 1950)

Robert Pack, Wallace Stevens: An Approach to His Poetry and Thought (New Brunswick, New Jersey: Rutgers University Press, 1958)(New York: Gordian Press, 1968)

Rajeev S. Patke, The Long Poems of Wallace Stevens: An Interpretative Study (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Cambridge University Press, 1985)

Roy Harvey Pearce & J. Hillis Miller (eds.), The Act of the Mind: Essays on the Poetry of Wallace Stevens (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, 1965)

Alan D. Perlis, Wallace Stevens: A World of Transforming Shapes (Lewisburg, Pennsylvania: Bucknell University Press, 1976)

Margaret Peterson, Wallace Stevens and the Idealist Tradition (Ann Arbor: UMI Research Press, 1983)

Helen Regueiro, The Limits of Imagination: Wordsworth, Yeats, and Stevens (Ithaca, New York: Cornell University Press, 1976)

Joan Richardson, Wallace Stevens A Biography: The Early Years, 1879-1923 (New York: Morrow, 1986)(New York: Beech Tree Books, 1988)

_____________, Wallace Stevens A Biography: The Later Years, 1923-1955 (New York: Morrow, 1988)

Joseph N. Riddel, The Clairvoyant Eye: The Poetry and Poetics of Wallace Stevens (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1965)

Anca Rosu, The Metaphysics of Sound in Wallace Stevens (Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 1995)

Melita Schaum, Wallace Stevens & the Feminine (Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 1993)

___________, Wallace Stevens and the Critical Schools (Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 1988)

Daniel R. Schwarz, Narrative and Representation in the Poetry of Wallace Stevens: A Tune Beyond Us, Yet Ourselves (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1993)

Lisa M. Steinman, Made in America: Science, Technology, and American Modernist Poets (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1987)

Herbert J. Stern, Wallace Stevens: Art of Uncertainty (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1966)

Ronald Sukenick, Wallace Stevens: Musing the Obscure: Readings, An Interpretation, and a Guide to the Collected Poetry (New York: New York University Press, 1967)

James Thorpe, Frontiersmen of the Spirit: Four Masters of Twentieth-Century Literature—William Butler Yeats—James Joyce—Wallace Stevens—Conrad Aiken (San Marino: Huntington Library, 1980)

Helen H. Vendler, On Extended Wings: Wallace Stevens' Longer Poems (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1969)

_____________, Wallace Stevens: Words Chosen Out of Desire (Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press, 1984)

David Walker, The Transparent Lyric: Reading and Meaning in the Poetry of Stevens and Williams (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1984)

Thomas F. Walsh, Concordance to the Poetry of Wallace Stevens (University Park, Pennsylvania: Pennsylvania State University Press, 1963)

A. Litz Walton, Introspective Voyager: The Poetic Development of Wallace Stevens (1972)

Henry W. Wells, Introduction to Wallace Stevens (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1964)

Susan B. Weston, Wallace Stevens: An Introduction to the Poetry (New York: Columbia University Press, 1977)

Abbe F. Willard, Wallace Stevens: The Poet and His Critics (Chicago: American Library Association, 1978)

Kathleen Woodward, At Last, the Real Distinguished Thing: The Late Poems of Eliot, Pound, Stevens and Williams (Columbus: Ohio University Press,1980)

Leonora Woodman, Stanza My Stone: Wallace Stevens and the Hermetic Tradition (West Lafayette, Indiana: Purdue University Press, 1983)

Bibliography: Articles

Journal Articles on Wallace Stevens
a comprehsive bibliography prepared by Gerard Nielsen

Research Resources

University of Miami Wallace Stevens Collection

Joseph Riddell, "Wallace Stevens," in Jackson R. Bryer (ed.), Sixteen Modern American Authors 623-674 (Durham: Duke University Press, 1990)(Vol. 2: A Survey of Research and Criticism)

Poems Appearing in Poetry Magazine

"Phases," Vol. 5, November 1914, pg. 70
" Sunday Morning," Vol. 7, November 1915, pg. 81
"Three Travelers Watch a Sunrise," Vol. 8, July 1916, pg. 163
"Carlos Among the Candles," Vol. 11, December 1917, pg. 115
("Life contracts and death . . ."), Vol. 12, May 1918, pg. 59
("John Smith and his son . . ."), Vol. 12, May 1918, pg. 59
"Negation," Vol. 12, May 1918, pg. 59
("There is another mother . . ."), Vol. 12, May 1918, pg. 59
"The Surprises of the Superhuman," Vol. 12, May 1918, pg. 59
"Comme Dieu Dispense de Graces," Vol. 12, May 1918, pg. 59
"Morale," Vol. 12, May 1918, pg. 59
"Anecdotal Revery," Vol. 12, May 1918, pg. 59
("The spirit wakes in the night . . ."), Vol. 12, May 1918, pg. 59
"Lettres d'un Soldat,", Vol. 12, May 1918, pg. 59
"Colloquy with a Polish Aunt," Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"From Pecksniffiana: The Paltry Nude Starts on a Spring Voyage,
Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"The Place of the Solitaires," Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"From Pecksniffiana: The Curtains in the House of the Metaphysician,"
Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"Of the Surface of Things," Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"From Pecksniffiana: Anecdote of the Jar," Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"From Pecksniffiana: The Indigo Glass in the Grass," Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"Banal Sojourn," Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"Ploughing on Sunday," Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"Exposition of the Contents of a Cab," Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"From Pecksniffiana: Peter Parasol," Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"From Pecksniffiana: The Weeping Burgher," Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"Homunculus et La Belle Etoile," Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"From Pecksniffiana: Fabliau of Florida," Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"Pecksniffiana," Vol. 15, October 1919, pg. 1
"Hibiscus on the Sleeping Shores," Vol. 19, October 1921, pg. 1
"The Load of Sugar-Cane," Vol. 19, October 1921, pg. 1
"From Sur Ma Guzzla Gracile: Of Heaven Considered as a Tomb," Vol. 19, October 1921, pg. 1
"From Sur Ma Guzzla Gracile: Of the Manner of Addressing Clouds," Vol. 19, October 1921, pg. 1
"From Sur Ma Guzzla Gracile: Another Weeping Woman," Vol. 19, October 1921, pg. 1
"The Cuban Doctor," Vol. 19, October 1921, pg. 1
"From Sur Ma Guzzla Gracile: Tea at the Palaz of Hoon," Vol. 19, October 1921, pg. 1
"From Sur Ma Guzzla Gracile: The Snow Man," Vol. 19, October 1921, pg. 1
"From Sur Ma Guzzla Gracile: Gubbinal," Vol. 19, October 1921, pg. 1
"From Sur Ma Guzzla Gracile: The Doctor of Geneva," Vol. 19, October 1921, pg. 1
"From the Misery of Don Joost," Vol. 19, October 1921, pg. 1
"Palace of the Babies," Vol. 19, October 1921, pg. 1
"Sur Ma Guzzla Gracile," Vol. 19, October 1921, pg. 1
"Good Man, Bad Woman," Vol. 41, October 1932, pg. 6
"Like Decorations in a Nigger Cemetery," Vol. 45, February 1935, pg. 239
"Tribute to Harriet Monroe," Vol. 49, December 1936, pg. 154
"The Man with the Blue Guitar," Vol. 50, May 1937, pg. 61
"A Rabbit as King of the Ghosts," Vol. 51, October 1937, pg. 1
"Illustrations of the Poetic as a Sense," Vol. 54, July 1939, pg. 177
"The Common Life," Vol. 54, July 1939, pg. 177
"The Sense of the Sleight-of-Hand Man," Vol. 54, July 1939, pg. 177
"The Candle a Saint," Vol. 54, July 1939, pg. 177
"A Dish of Peaches in Russia," Vol. 54, July 1939, pg. 177
"Arcades of Philadelphia the Past," Vol. 54, July 1939, pg. 177
"Of Hartford in a Purple Light," Vol. 54, July 1939, pg. 177
"Certain Phenomena of Sound," Vol. 61, October 1942, pg. 358
"The Ultimate Poem Is Abstract," Vol. 71, October 1947, pg. 10
"Bouquet of Roses in Sunlight," Vol. 71, October 1947, pg. 10
"Things of August," Vol. 75, December 1949, pg. 125
"St. Armorer's Church from the Outside," Vol. 81, October 1952, pg. 72
"From the "Adagia," Vol. 89, December 1956, pg. 187
"Phases," Vol. 121, October 1972, pg. 31

[Source: Historical Index, Poetry]