Best-selling poet Robert Bly dies at 94

MINNEAPOLIS — Robert Bly, known for his protests against the Vietnam war and a controversial men’s movement, died at his home in Minneapolis at age 94, the New York Times reported.

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Bly authored more than 50 books, including poetry, translations of foreign writers, and commentaries on literature and society.

Bly passed away peacefully at home with most of his family by his side, the Associated Press reported. He had suffered from dementia for 14 years, according to family.

Bly was known for his poetry readings, where he would read works multiple times or dress in an outlandish fashion. His last public reading was in 2015 in Minneapolis, where he thumped his cane on the floor in time with the words as he read, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.

Robert Bly became famous in the 1960s, publishing poetry attacking President Johnson and other commanders in Vietnam for their actions in the war. He co-founded American Writers Against the Vietnam War in 1966.

In 1990, Bly published what would be his most famous work, “Iron John: A Book About Men”. The book made the case that American men needed to rediscover their primitive ferocity and audacity to better be nurturing fathers and mentors, the New York Times reported. While he said the movement was not intended to turn men against women, some critics accused him of creating in it reaction to the feminist movement.

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