Online Exhibitions

 

In this exhibit, the Poetry Center Library presents first editions of works by some of the twentieth century’s most iconic poets, including T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, Gertrude Stein, Dylan Thomas, Marianne Moore, Elizabeth Bishop, and others. In addition to historical first editions, the Poetry Center also holds a number of facsimile reprints of first editions the Library would otherwise be unable to collect. Some of the facsimile editions on display here include facsimile reprints of important works by W.B. Yeats and Robert Frost. These works have been chosen for their historical and literary significance as well as their beauty. We hope you enjoy this opportunity to experience these exceptional treasures from our Rare Book Room.

This exhibit, curated by Sarah Kortemeier, was originally presented in the Jeremy Ingalls Gallery of the University of Arizona Poetry Center from July 1, 2013 to September 4, 2013.

The Waste Land
Image of The Waste Land

T.S. Eliot. The Waste Land. New York: Boni and Liveright, 1922.

T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land was one of the most influential poems published in the 20th century. The Poetry Center’s holdings include two copies of the first edition, published by Boni and Liveright in 1922 (the Hogarth Press, run by Leonard and Virginia Woolf, subsequently brought out a UK edition in 1923). These copies are part of the permanent collection of the Poetry Center’s L.R. Benes Rare Book Room. They are the generous gift of John and Helen Schaefer.

Animula
Image of Animula

T.S. Eliot. Animula. London: Faber and Faber, 1929. 

The Cultivation of Christmas Trees
Image of the Cultivation of a Christmas Tree

T.S. Eliot. The Cultivation of Christmas Trees. New York: Farrar, Straus and Cudahy, 1956.

The Pisan Cantos
Image of The Pisan Cantos

Ezra Pound. The Pisan Cantos. New York: New Directions, 1948.

Like Eliot, Ezra Pound influenced a generation of poets. His Cantos, a long, unfinished poem in 120 sections, is one of the most widely studied modernist works in English-language literature.

Drafts and Fragments of Cantos CX-CXVII
Image of Drafts and Fragments of Cantos CX-CXVII

Ezra Pound. Drafts and Fragments of Cantos CX-CXVII. New York: New Directions, 1968.

A Boy's Will
Image of facsimile reprint of A Boy's Will

Robert Frost. A Boy’s Will [facsimile reprint]. New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1915; reprinted New York: Collectors Reprints, Inc., 1992.

A Boy’s Will and Mountain Interval were Robert Frost’s first and third collections, respectively. The 1915 Holt edition of A Boy’s Will is the first American edition, a republication of David Nutt’s UK edition of 1913. 

Mountain Interval
Image of Mountain Interval

Robert Frost. Mountain Interval. New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1916.

Mountain Interval includes “The Road Not Taken,” one of Frost’s most famous poems.

Fields of Wonder
Image of Fields of Wonder

Langston Hughes. Fields of Wonder. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1947.

One of the most influential figures of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes published poetry, plays, fiction, and criticism. Fields of Wonder was his fifth collection of poetry.

The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas
Interior image of The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas
Cover image of The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas

The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas. London: The Bodley Head, 1933.

Gertrude Stein shot to international fame on the publication of this bestselling biography written in the persona of her partner, Alice B. Toklas. The book remains her best-known work.

New Poems
Image of New Poems

Dylan Thomas. New Poems. Norfolk: New Directions, 1943.

One of the most famous Welsh poets of the twentieth century, Dylan Thomas published several collections in the United States under the auspices of James Laughlin’s publishing company New Directions. New Poems was produced as part of the company’s “Poets of the Year” pamphlet series of the 1940s.

If I Were Four-and-Twenty
Image of If I Were Four-and-Twenty

W.B. Yeats. If I Were Four-and-Twenty. Dublin: The Cuala Press, 1940.

William Butler Yeats, a towering figure in 20th-century literature, published nearly 50 books through the Cuala Press. The press was run by his sisters, Elizabeth and Lily, and was notable for its female leadership in a time when few women worked in publishing. The Poetry Center holds a number of facsimile reprints of W.B. Yeats titles from this press, several of which are displayed here along with the first edition of his late work If I Were Four-and-Twenty (1940).

Responsibilities: Poems and a Play
Image of facsimile reprint of Responsibilities: Poems and a Play

W.B. Yeats. Responsibilities: Poems and a Play [facsimile reprint]. Churchtown: The Cuala Press, 1914; reprinted Irish University Press, 1971.

The Wild Swans at Coole, Other Verses and a Play in Verse
Image of facsimile reprint of The Wild Swans at Coole

W.B. Yeats. The Wild Swans at Coole, Other Verses and a Play in Verse [facsimile reprint]. Churchtown: The Cuala Press, 1917; reprinted Irish University Press, 1970.

North and South
Image of North and South

Elizabeth Bishop. North and South. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1946.

Elizabeth Bishop is one of the best-known voices of twentieth-century American poetry. Though she never allied herself with any particular poetic movement, Bishop sustained deep friendships with a number of fellow poets (including Marianne Moore and Robert Lowell). Bishop’s formal mastery was immediately apparent upon the publication of her first collection, North and South, in 1946. The poems in this collection were later republished in 1955’s North and South/A Cold Spring, which won the 1956 Pulitzer Prize.

North and South/A Cold Spring
Image of North and South/A Cold Spring

Elizabeth Bishop. Poems: North and South/A Cold Spring. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1955.

Poems
Image of Poems

Elizabeth Bishop. Poems. London: Chatto & Windus, 1956.

Poems represented the first publication of Bishop’s work in the United Kingdom.

The Absentee
Image of The Absentee

Marianne Moore. The Absentee. New York: House of Books, Ltd., 1962.

Marianne Moore, like her contemporaries Eliot and Pound, was one of the most influential poetic voices of the twentieth century. Her poetry was widely acclaimed in its time for its originality and the precision of the poet’s powers of observation, and today she is acknowledged as one of the great masters of the modernist movement.

Like a Bulwark
Like a Bulwark

Marianne Moore. Like a Bulwark. New York: The Viking Press, 1956.

O To Be a Dragon
Oh To Be a Dragon

Marianne Moore. O To Be a Dragon. New York: The Viking Press, 1959.

Selected Poems
Image of Selected Poems

Marianne Moore. Selected Poems. London: Faber and Faber Limited, 1935.

Diving Into the Wreck
Image of Diving Into the Wreck

Adrienne Rich. Diving Into the Wreck: Poems 1971-1972. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc., 1973.

Adrienne Rich achieved early success with her first collection of poetry, the Yale Younger Poets Prize-winning volume A Change of World, and went on to become a hugely influential poet, critic, and feminist. Throughout her life, her work helped to advance feminist and LGBTQ concerns in contemporary culture.

The Dream of a Common Language: Poems 1974-1977
Image from The Dream of a Common Language: Poems 1974-1977

Adrienne Rich. The Dream of a Common Language: Poems 1974-1977. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc., 1978.

Snapshots of a Daughter-In-Law: Poems, 1954-1962
Image of Snapshots of a Daughter-In-Law

Adrienne Rich. Snapshots of a Daughter-In-Law: Poems, 1954-1962. New York: Harper & Row, 1963.

The Battlefield Where the Moon Says I Love You
Image of The Battlefield Where the Moon Says I Love You

Frank Stanford. The Battlefield Where the Moon Says I Love You. Fayetteville: Lost Roads Publishing Co., 1977.

Prolific poet Frank Stanford published eight volumes of poetry in the final seven years of his life; these works have attained legendary status in contemporary American poetry, particularly his epic The Battlefield Where the Moon Says I Love You

The Singing Knives
Image of The Singing Knives

Frank Stanford. The Singing Knives. Fayetteville: Lost Roads Publishing Co., 1979.

Crib Death
Image of Crib Death

Frank Stanford. Crib Death. Tucson: Ironwood Press, 1978.

Field Talk
Image of Field Talk

Frank Stanford. Field Talk. Seattle: The Mill Mountain Press, 1975. Gift of C.D. Wright.

You
Image of back cover of You
Image of front cover of You

Frank Stanford. You. Fayetteville: Lost Roads Publishing Co., 1979.

Arizona Board of Regents