If Ezra Pound was America's most original and influential modern poet, he was also its most controversial. Living primarily in Europe, the prodigiously energetic Pound promoted innovation as a critic and editor, serving as friend and adviser to such writers as T. S. Eliot, William Carlos Williams, James Joyce, and Ernest Hemingway, as well as to photographer Alvin Langdon Coburn. By the 1920s, Pound's experimental verse and critical essays helped revolutionize western poetry. His most ambitious work was the Cantos, an epic series of lyrical poems that he began to publish in the 1920s and on which he labored all his life. Pound's virulent anti-Semitism, support of fascism, and mental instability ultimately clouded his reputation. But Coburn, who photographed Pound in London for his 1913 book Men of Mark, portrayed the passionate intellectual who inspired and influenced so many.