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Bishop was a prolific letter-writer and a connoisseur of correspondence, who read deeply and widely in the form, and taught a course at Harvard on it. Being positioned between the artful and the everyday, the letter form helped her style herself as a writer with high aesthetic ambition but a distrust of any writing that positions itself as exceptional and apart from ordinary life. Her long correspondences with Marianne Moore and Robert Lowell demonstrate her working out this position. The letter form provided a private space where ideas could be explored in an open-ended way, in the context of personal intimacies. Correspondence connected her to friends and family while she was traveling frequently and living for two decades in Brazil. It was an important stylistic resource for her poetry. Her letters have been crucial to Bishop’s posthumous reputation and evolving views of her life and work. Her correspondence with Louise Bradley reveals her discovery, in adolescence, of same-sex intimacy and poetic vocation. Her letters to her psychoanalyst Ruth Foster chronicle her sexual history, dream life, and the connections of both to her creativity.