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When William Carlos Williams used the visual arts as part of arguing his modernist poetics in the 1920s his emphasis was upon getting away from inherited conventions, and for aesthetic models that would provide guidance for what he considered the necessary direction for contemporary American poetry. Williams’ continued interest in these issues is supplemented in the 1950s by his interest in painters—particularly Peter Brueghel—who incorporate a more human element, and one set in the cycles of the seasons, human life, and cultural change. This development is part of a wider shift in Williams’ poetics in the 1950s as he himself aged, became physically handicapped, and wrote poems that brought the human subject more fully into the experience informing the poem. In the 1950s poems the poet is very aware of his changing role in relation to the world described, or in some cases remembered, even as he continues to argue for an innovative aesthetics that can move these concerns beyond the poet’s own time-bound place in his own world. Such a position marks the difference between Paterson V, published in 1958, seven years after Book IV. The Unicorn Tapestries at the center of Book V mark Williams’ reconciliation with a European past that at the same time sets its aesthetic composition against changes in Dr. Paterson, and the shifting world of sexuality, the seasons, and cultural change. In the ten poems of “Pictures from Brughel,” (1960), this tension is central. The poet implicitly speaks through his reading of the painter’s concerns, the poet’s role emphasized through the selection of paintings, selection of detail within the paintings, and ordering of the ten poems. Brueghel interested Williams because of his emphasis upon foregrounding composition—the painting as a painting—but also the incorporation of the shifting cycles of human and natural change as subject matter.