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Poems From Prison

June 07, 1987

In "My Nephew Tony" (May 17, in some editions), Jessica Reynolds Shaver quotes some letters she said Anthony Reynolds had sent her from prison, adding, "I didn't know he wrote poetry." In reality, Tony does not write poetry. He copies poetry, and it appears that he has conned his aunt into believing that she sees "a Tony in them that I have never seen before, the Tony I knew must be there."

The poems in the article were written by James Kavanaugh, published in a book titled "There Are Men Too Gentle to Live Among Wolves" (Dutton, 1970).

Rachel Ann Abril

Newhall The writer replies:

I now know my nephew Tony did not write the poems. He did apparently change Kavanaugh's slightly to reflect his own experience. I am angry at Tony for not leveling with me. And I'm sad for him. Maybe he wanted to believe Kavanaugh's cries of anguish were his own.

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