JQA’s Poetry

by Richard Brookhiser

The Horace that John Quincy Adams translated–more precisely, imitated–was the Ode, Book One, number 22, beginning “Integer vitae scelerisque purus…” I do not know Latin, but I have read several translations of this ode by English and American poets of different centuries, and triangulating from these, I feel confident in saying that JQA hit the light-hearted tone very well. For instance, he rhymes “settle” with the Mexican volcano, “Popocatapetl.”

Of course John Kerry could do as well, though not W.

The Corner

The one and only.