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Awful but Cheerful

Gillian White: The Tentativeness of Elizabeth Bishop, 25 May 2006

Edgar Allan Poe & the Juke-Box: Uncollected Poems, Drafts and Fragments 
by Elizabeth Bishop, edited by Alice Quinn.
Farrar, Straus, 367 pp., £22.50, March 2006, 0 374 14645 4
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... alternating cheers and sighs over this long-awaited edition of her manuscript materials, edited by Alice Quinn. For nearly a decade, Quinn, who is the poetry editor of the New Yorker, pored over 118 boxes containing some 3,500 pages of Bishop’s papers in the Vassar College library, transcribing and editing them into ...

Paulie lops it off

Elisa Segrave, 2 December 1993

The Wives of Bath 
by Susan Swan.
Granta, 237 pp., £8.99, October 1993, 0 14 014081 6
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... short and she has a humped back. She is Mary Beatrice Bradford, known as Mouse. Her mother Alice is dead. She calls her hump ‘Alice’ and has conversations with it, often about penises and the nature of being male and female. Mouse’s father Morley is an overworked doctor who is too busy to pay much attention to ...

A Djinn speaks

Colm Tóibín: What about George Yeats?, 20 February 2003

Becoming George: The Life of Mrs W.B. Yeats 
by Ann Saddlemyer.
Oxford, 808 pp., £25, September 2002, 0 19 811232 7
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... new wife, soon to call herself George, was 25. Ezra Pound, best man at the wedding, wrote to John Quinn in New York to say that he had known Georgie Hyde-Lees as long as he had known his wife, who had been her best friend; he found her sensible and thought she would ‘perhaps dust a few cobwebs out of his belfry. At any rate she won’t be a flaming ...

I want to boom

Mark Ford: Pound Writes Home, 24 May 2012

Ezra Pound to His Parents: Letters 1895-1929 
edited by Mary de Rachewiltz, David Moody and Joanna Moody.
Oxford, 737 pp., £39, January 2011, 978 0 19 958439 0
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... stipend so he could concentrate on his poetry, only to commit suicide two years later; to John Quinn, a lawyer and collector to whom T.S. Eliot gave the manuscript of The Waste Land; to James Laughlin, founder and editor of New Directions (or Nude Erections as Pound liked to call it); to Alice Corbin Henderson of ...

A Man of No Mind

Colm Tóibín: The Passion of Roger Casement, 13 September 2012

The Dream of the Celt 
by Mario Vargas Llosa and Edith Grossman.
Faber, 404 pp., £18.99, June 2012, 978 0 571 27571 7
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... version of Casement’s personality, offered by Conrad in the spring of 1916 in a letter to John Quinn, when Casement was on trial for treason for importing arms to Ireland from Germany. Conrad had spent three weeks at Matadi Station with Casement in 1890, when Casement was trying to recruit labour to work on the railway and Conrad was waiting to begin his ...

Elizabeth Bishop’s Aviary

Mark Ford: Elizabeth Bishop’s Aviary, 29 November 2007

... The earliest poem collected in Edgar Allan Poe & the Juke-Box, Alice Quinn’s edition of Elizabeth Bishop’s miscellaneous drafts and fragments, opens: I introduce Penelope Gwin, A friend of mine through thick and thin, Who’s travelled much in foreign parts Pursuing culture and the arts. ‘And also,’ says Penelope ‘This family life is not for me ...

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