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Home / Editions and Resources / Newsletters / Marianne Moore Newsletter - Volume 2 Number 1 Spring 1978

Marianne Moore Newsletter - Volume 2 Number 1 Spring 1978

[front cover]

Marianne Moore Newsletter

Volume II Number 2 Spring 1978

[front inside cover]

MARIANNE MOORE NEWSLETTER

Volume II, Number 1, Spring 1978

COVER ILLUSTRATION

Swan candelabrum drawn by Marianne Moore, Summer, 1930

All previously unpublished material by Marianne Moore is published here by permission of Clive E. Driver Literary Executor of the Estate of Marianne C. Moore.

Subscription: Two issues a year, Spring and Fall. U.S.A. $4.00 a year; Foreign $4.50. Subscriptions run for calendar year in which placed. Continuing subscriptions available. Please make cheques payable to MMN, The Rosenbach Foundation.

Contributions welcome on all aspects of MM and her work up to 75O words. Deadlines: Spring, February 1st; Fall, October 1st.

Address correspondence to Patricia C. Willis, Editor, MMN, The Philip H. and A.S.W. Rosenbach Foundation, 2010 DeLancey Place, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19103

Copyright © 1978

by Clive E. Driver,

Literary Executor of the Estate

of Marianne C. Moore

ISSN 0145-8779

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Marianne Moore Newsletter

Volume II Number 2 Spring 1978

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OBSERVATIONS

"NO SWAN SO FINE"

The history of "No Swan So Fine" has emerged from an exploration in the MM Archive; the assembled references offer an enriched reading of the poem.

On 31 March 1930, MM wrote to George Saintsbury:

The loss of your friend, Lord Balfour, must be a great one to you; for even we who knew him only as a personage, will remember his death with lasting regret. In his relations with America he was so exceedingly kind, chivalrous, and hopeful. But I myself knowing less than I ought to know about government, found it pleasant to know that Lord Balfour played a good game of tennis.

In the summer of 1930, MM noticed a Christie's sale announcement in the Illustrated London News (28 June, p. 1211). In her notebook, she sketched one of a pair of Louis XV candelabra, "the property of the late Lord Balfour," pictured in the advertisement.

A year later, MM read in the New York Times Magazine (19 May 1913, pp. 8-9) an article by Percy Philip, "Versailles Reborn: A Moonlight Drama." This piece was prompted by the restoration of Versailles then taking place with the aid of the Rockefeller Foundation. Philip wrote his "drama" in a fanciful vein, pretending that the statues on the grounds protested the dullness of Versailles without the court of the Kings Louis. Now, he says, Melancholy is queen of all the shades, and "it is she whose stillness rests like a gray cloud over the gardens and the water in the fountains of Versailles."

MM clipped one of the accompanying pictures and wrote above it the caption from another which showed the defunct fountains, "There is no water so still as the dead fountains of Versailles,"

[page 3]

The Tapis Vert at Versailles Where Melancholy Now Reigns as Queen

Another year passed. In August, 1932, Harriet Monroe, through Morton Dauwen Zabel, asked for a contribution to Poetry. MM wrote to her brother about the request (T.L.S., 6 August 1932):

The Swan Sold at Christie’s

[Zabel] also says Miss Monroe would like me to be represented in Poetry’s 20th Anniversary number (October) with a poem -- "not necessarily long" and could I give them one by August 25th?(The magazine is to continue at least through the winter.) I am telling him I shall try to offer him by that time, a "very short poem”. And here it is! ...

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NO SWAN SO FINE

"No water so still as the

dead fountains of Versailles."No swan,

with swart blind look askance

and ambidextrous legs, so fine

as the chintz china one with fawn-

brown eyes and toothed gold

collar on to show whose bird it was.

 

Lodged in the Louis Fifteenth

candalabrum-tree of cockscomb-

tinted buttons, dahlias,

sea-urchins, and everlastings,

it perches on the branching foam

of polished sculptured

flowers,--at ease and tall. The king is dead.

 

Lord Balfour had a pair o' these candalabra which were sold last year at Christie’s with his other things. Each swan has a gold saw-toothed collar and chain and both feet are planted on the tree.

 

Next to the quotation in the first two lines, MM added the name "Percy Philip" to acknowledge her source.

Except for the change of spelling to "candelabrum" and the deletion of commas after "sea-urchins" and "flowers," Poetry printed the poem in this version (41, October, 1932, 7). The exchange of "ambidextrous" for "gondoliering" in line four was made in March, 1933, for Ezra Pound's printing of the poem in his Active Anthology. In that printing, "candalabrum" was spelled as in MM's letter, and a comma was restored after "sea-urchins." MM included this poem in three subsequent collections making only minor changes in punctuation. It is one of the few poems to resist MM's later textual revisions.

The chronological development of the poem suggests that the demise of Lord Balfour, the passing of the Court of Versailles, and the possible impending cessation of Poetry magazine sponsored the dead

[page 5]

MM's Reading Diary, 1930-1943 (Rosenbach 1250/6)

fountains and the dead king of the poem, while the swan candelabrum remains as an elegant artifact, representing the permanence of a work of art and its ability to outlast its progenitor and its custodian.

"IN THE MUSEUM AT WHITEHALL"

"Why, oh why, one ventures to ask, set / flatness on some cindery pinnacle / as if on Lord Nelson's revolving diamond rosette?" asked MM in "Tell Me, Tell Me." "What, oh what," one might ask, "is Lord Nelson's revolving diamond rosette?" MM’s note to the poem identifies it only as "In the museum at Whitehall," a London landmark which has now no museum.

[page 6]

MM knew about the rosette many years before she mentioned it in a poem. She said in a letter written to her brother on 16 June 1911 that she had just come from a visit to Whitehall where

The warden showed us a peg from which an ornament (a diamond aigrette) was missing. He looked very significant and said Mrs. So and So (Lord Nelson’s descendant who had lent it) had taken it out as she was attending court functions and so on. He said the Sultan of Turkey had presented it to Nelson; that it had a "vibratin' plume and a revolvin' rosette of diamonds;" you could wind the rosette and it would revolve slowly for some time.

Nelson’s Chelengk, National Maritime Musuem

In 1951, the rosette was stolen and has never been recovered, but a replica of it was made for the film Bequest to the Nation. This replica and other Nelson memorabilia were moved in 1962 to the National Maritime Museum at Greenwich, from whose curator welearned:

The object you referred to was the so-called

[page 7]

"Chelengk" a diamond "Plume of Triumph" presented to Nelson by the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire (Selim III) after the Battle of the Nile (August 1, 1798).

It consisted of a revolving rosette with a true-love-knot beneath and thirteen rays above [symbolizing thirteen French ships sunk by Nelson’s fleet], all in diamonds. It was intended as an ornament to be worn in the hat, and was in the nineteenth century, when it was owned by the Bridport family, worn at Court as a hair ornament by ladies of the family.

Almost fifty years after her visit to Whitehall, MM pondered the question of where to find a refuge from "egocentricity'’ and asked:

Why, oh why, one ventures to ask, set

flatness on some cindery pinnacle

as if on Lord Nelson's revolving diamond rosette?

It appeared; gem, burnished rarity,

and peak of delicacy --

in contrast with grievance touched off on

any ground--the absorbing

geometry of a fantasy:

Her description of the gem does credit to it and to the proud Nelson whose portrait in the National Maritime Museum shows him wearing the "burnished rarity" in his tricorne hat.

Louise Collins

1The Complete Poems of Marianne Moore. New York: Viking, 1967. p. 231.

[page 8]

"The Wave of the Ages” by Einar Jónsson

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NOT OF ANY SCHOOL

When she had the opportunity to choose poems for her first major book, Observations (1924), MM included a handful of unpublished ones, but not necessarily new ones. "An Egyptian Pulled Glass Bottle in the Shape of a Fish" depended for all but its title and last two lines on a poem written in 1915.

In the early version, called "In Einar Jonsson's 'Cow,'" we find images drawn from two journal articles (both listed in MM’s Reading Notebook, RF 1250/1). The first, by B. DeLinde in Studio 58 (April 1913), 245-248, discusses the work of the Icelandic artist who translated Northern mythology into monumental sculptures:

His creations are of so uncommon a character, so entirely the product of his individuality, that the critic who loves to find a classified place for every artist is nonplussed. Evidently Einar Jonsson does not belong to any school.... In his art [he] is never the slave of dogmas, and he follows them only if they happen to harmonize with his instincts. The old masters have not taught him anything, only, perhaps, this, that he, like themselves, will pursue his own way and build from his own ground.

Among the works pictured is "The Wave of the Ages," the "wave held up for us to see / In its essential perpendicularity".

The second article, from the American-Scandinavian Review (3 [March-April 1915], 91-95), is Jonsson's own statement. Respected but without income from his works, the sculptor assesses his position:

It is because I go my own ways that I do not sell my works .... It is strange to see how artists are bound together in their activity. In my opinion nothing is more dangerous to art than tradition .... Schools of art

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"Ymir and Audhumla” by Einar Jónsson

are impossible, and there ought not to exist forerunners or followers in art. For it should come from within, and not entirely from without. It should be an expression of the personality itself.

This statement is followed by pictures of four sculptures including "Ymir and Audhumla." The caption notes that "the giant Ymir, according to the Edda story, suckles the cow Audhumla;" they represent the nebula and ether, the first things created. Here, of course, are the elements of the title, the lines "Here we have thirst,/ And patience from the first," as well as the conclusion of the 1915 version. MM submitted the poem to the American-Scandinavian Review in May, 1915. It was rejected.

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Marianne Moore, 343 North Hanover Street, Carlisle, Pennsylvania. In Einar Jonsson's 'Cow,' Here we have thirst, And patience from the first, And art--as in a wave held up for us to see In its essential perpendicularity Not chilly but intense Intense. The spectrum's out Out of the body of the world, laid on its back, And made eubordinate. We recognize no lack. AN EGYPTIAN PULLED GLASS BOTTLE IN THE SHAPE OF A FISH Here we have thirst And patience from the first. And art, as in a wave held op for us to see In its essential perpendicularity; Not brittle but Intense—the spectrum, that Spectacular and nimble animal the fish, Whose scales turn aside the sun's sword with their polish.

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"A Fish-shaped Glass Bottle from Tell el-Amarna."

Six years later, the Egyptian bottle made its appearance in "Home Life in Ancient Egypt 3000 Years Ago" by T. Eric Feet (Illustrated London News, 159 [6 August 1921], 182- 185), A dig had unearthed a "unique" bottle called "the gem of the collection: the finest example of ancient Egyptian art from Tell el-Amarna - a fish-shaped glass bottle." A black-and-white picture of the "multicolored” bottle accompanied the article.

With this bottle for inspiration, MM reworked the poem, effectively burying the sources of her "thirst" and "wave" images, for the bottle by itself can seem to account for them. MM must have felt satisfied with this version, at least until Complete Poems (1967) when she changed "with" in the last line to "by."

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BIBLIOGRAPHY

MM’S interest in the work of Anthony Trollope prompted two Dial pieces and quotations in both "Marriage” and "An Octopus" all published between 1923 and 1927. In 1933, she found an outlet for a renewed interest and she published in the Criterion a review of a special edition of The Warden. Signed "M.M", it has not come to the attention of indexers or bibliographers, but it is so characteristic of MM's literary concerns as to merit attention.

In the fall of 1932, MM read that the Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, had brought out a model edition of The Warden. It was part of a non-profit venture intended to provide library editions which would withstand hard use. As Dr. Edward F. Stevens, project organizer, told the New York Times on 14 November, he had planned "a redemptive effort toward the rescue of standard literature from the humiliation of ephemeral reprints for the casual reader or of showy sets for the gullible buyer, none of which has any place on the shelves of a library...."

MM then wrote a 922-word review of this edition which combined two of her enthusiasms: Trollope and superior book production. On 23 January 1933, she sent it unbidden to the Criterion, although she realized that "review space should as a rule be used for new books...." It appeared among the "Shorter Notices" in July (Vol. 12, pp. 111-112).

The review notes in its opening paragraph that this edition commemorates the fiftieth anniversary of Trollope’s death, appears with his family’s permission, and serves as a fitting remedy to the harassment by American piracy which plagued the author's work during his lifetime.

There followed, in the manuscript version, a

[page 14]

long paragraph on the technical aspects of the new edition -- a passage apparently cut by the Criterion editors. While the rest of the article as printed examines The Warden as fiction and sets Trollope as a craftsman among his peers, the excised paragraph details MM's solicitude for the well-made book. In manuscript, the paragraph reads:

The book is printed on fairly heavy light-ivory laid paper, in 12-point Linotype Granj on, It has been suggested that the title-page is too expanded and that the twig-and-apple between line 2 and line 3 could be spared since an engraved fruit-in-basket with garden implements occupies the middle of the page. Both faults, however, if they are faults, are the result of over-anxiety for perfection; and independent of scale, the herring-bone weave of the straw basket and its tastefulness seem just the right device for Trollope. In the matter of margins, one is easily unreasonable; Gordon Craig and Whistler having made timber-woIves of many who would otherwise be harmless dogs. The Book Collector's Packet would have preferred a coloured binding, but about the black buckram one is very sure. The black horse, the black panther, the black squirrel, the French woman, the English man, look well in black, and the separate volume preserves distinction by a stiff binding that is black; or if paper-bound, by white. Nor does one concede that there should be a great disparity between the book for use and the noble book. Collectors should spurn exaggerated dimensions, hasty signatures made wholesale, and noisy materials. The question, could this book have been made so that a Medici would like it better ought rather to be, why do those who can have what they like, accept distinction that is without handiness and modesty? This apparently unremarkable specimen of The Warden is a symbol of "judgment and exact taste in the book arts."

[page 15]

It catches the eye and one studies it a moment to see what makes it vivid, unaffected, and at home in its clothes.

[The published review continues:] It has not been selected as the best novel Trollope wrote or his best liked novel, but as a protest against poor clothes for worthy books....

The book itself, which MM kept in her library, is indeed a worthy book in fine clothes. Moreover, it has its place in the history of book production as an early example of a sturdy, well designed book meant for library use. It is a great improvement over the "ephemeral reprints" and "showy sets" which MM must have suffered in her Hudson Park Library days.

NOTES

THE HAND OF AN OPTIMIST

Marianne Moore called Samuel Butler "a black thorn stick in the hand of the optimist,"1 and supported his arguments against literary boundaries and his "unwillingness to assume the official character of 'scrutineer,'" but she also criticized his "inability to enjoy the progress which he was able to promote." Enjoy is the important word here because it alerts us to the fact that as early as her first published essay MM promoted enjoyment as an acceptable criterion for evaluating an artist or his work. This fact is essential to understanding MM's problematic but intriguing essay, "The Accented Syllable." Even more helpful is the discovery among MM's manuscripts of an unpublished portion of the essay.2 The problem with "The Accented Syllable" in its published form is that in it MM seems unfocused and self-contradictory. With the unpublished section restored, however, it becomes clear that MM's criticism is deliberately dialectical and that in it she anticipates, at the height of imagism, contemporary poetry's concern for capturing tone of voice and manages at the same time, anticipating

[page 16]

contemporary critical method, to enact the content of the essay in her style.

In its published form the essay begins abruptly by asserting that "For the most part in what we read, it is the meaning rather than the tone of voice which gives us pleasure."3 What is unsettling is that immediately after this MM argues cogently, but inexplicably, considering her opening, for the importance of an author's tone of voice. Defining tone of voice as "that intonation in which the accents responsible for it are so unequivocal as to persist no matter under what circumstances the syllables are read or by whom they are read," MM claims that by it an author compels or repels us.4 She then guides us through a remarkably complex set of assertions and examples designed to prove her point.

To paraphrase MM's illustrations: Poe’s voice, flavored with artifice whether he writes history or fiction, is successful in the tales since it intensifies the artificiality of his drawingroom conversations; but in his essays on the Literati of New York where the ideas are not sound and where he lacks imagination, that same tone works against him becoming a "straining for rarity and an unmistakable tone of condescension."

But it is also true that "written tones of voice may resemble each other and that a distinctive tone of voice employed by one author may resemble that same tone of voice employed by another author." In supporting this assertion MM creates another problem. She claims that the examples she has chosen from Poe "are as like Butler's notes as any of Butler’s notes are like each other." But without examples from Butler it is difficult to concede her point. MM seems unaware of this gap in her argument and goes on to insist that, "The fact that a tone of voice is not invariably a distinctly personal one does not alter the fact that the tone of voice does contribute to or detract from the aesthetic effect of a piece of writing." Her argument in support of this assertion is brief and amazing enough to quote in full:

So far as free verse is concerned, it is the

[page 17]

easiest thing in the world to create one intonation in the image of another until finally one has assembled a bouquet of vocal exclamation points. I can read the following advertisement with a great deal of pleasure but I am not sure that it would give me pleasure to read this identical advertisement every day in the week. An intonation must have meaning behind it to support it or it is not worth much:

Venus pencils are made in seventeen black and two copying degrees, each degree guaranteed never to vary: softest and blackest, very very soft and very black, very soft and very black, very soft and black, soft and black, soft, soft medium, firm, medium hard, hard, very hard, extra hard, very very hard and firm, extra extra hard and firm, extra extra hard and extra firm, hardest and firmest.

MM's first sentence is cogent and remarkably prophetic in its criticism of imagism carried to the extreme, but her argument is not altogether convincing. The Venus pencil advertisement, a curious choice for an exhibit in a critical argument, undoubtedly has accents "so unequivocal as to persist," but it also has meaning. These are not nonsense words, and to MM, a talented sketcher herself, the words must have had very specific meaning. What MM claims is that it might not continue to give her pleasure and thus "is not worth much." But it is difficult to accept this evaluation and even more difficult to justify MM's abrupt return to her opening remark.

The discovery of the excised section of the essay settles these problems. In the MS, MM's second sentence is: "In the case of the following groups of words, however, I am inclined to think that the meaning has very little to do with the pleasure the words give us." There follow these twelve quotations:

"Then Louisa went into the kitchen and cried for it is exasperating to be unjustly accused." Strindberg: EASTER AND OTHER PLAYS

[page 18]

"And verses? Why I even composed a whole drama in imitation of Manfred. Among the characters was a ghost with blood on his breast, and not his own blood observe, but the blood of all humanity." Turgenef: RUDIN

"Tom when very young, had presented Sophia with a little bird which he had taken from the nest, had nursed up and taught to sing." TOM JONES

"One would hate to have to live in the world which Mr. X describes but one is delightfully conscious of the fact that one will never have to." J.B. Kerfoot: LIFE

"As I have said over and over again, if I think something that 1 know and greatly like" (in music) "no matter whose it is, is appropriate, I appropriate it." Butler: Note 122

"A cognate essay is on Description in Poetry by Mr. A. Clutton-Brock, who contends, firstly, that beauty in poetic description is irrelevant unless it adds to the cumulative powers of the whole, and secondly, that it must be judged by absolute standards but by its relation to the theme. Sound notions, these. The first might be taken to heart by certain modern bards; the second, by their critics." Books of the Month: ENGLISH REVIEW, January, 1912.

"It is true enough to say that everybody is selfish provided we add, and unselfish." Cabot: WHAT MEN LIVE BY

"Does Mr. Shaw admit that he has blundered? Not a bit of it. He assures the spectators that while in one sense the theme is not the 'opening theme’ because it does not open the work, in a higher, subtler sense it is the opening theme inasmuch as the music passes into it by 'an irresistible gravitation.' Mr. Shaw's week I suppose, begins with Tuesday afternoon." "The Arts and Crafts of Bernard Shaw." Reprinted in the TRANSCRIPT, Boston, September 16, 1914.

"Of course I knew all that down in the cellars of my being, but upstairs all the same I had the sense

[page 19]

of guilt and expiation, this anxious doubt that perhaps all that great, gloomy, mediaeval business of saints and nuns and bones and relics and miracles and icons and calvaries and cells and celibacy and horsehair shirts and blood and dirt and tears, was true after all!" Zangwill:DREAMERS OF THE GHETTO

"Androcles is probably Mr. Shaw himself and right glad we are to see him." ENGLISH REVIEW, October,1913

"Impartial? Never." LIFE

and the English of the footnote to one of Augier’s plays: "Three chops well peppered."

The quotations all capture a distinctive tone of voice and thereby provide pleasure. The Butler passage, from his then recently published Notebooks, also supplies the necessary comparison with Poe's critical prose and suggests a criterion MM employed in her own writing: "...if I think something that I know and greatly like...no matter whose it is, is appropriate, I appropriate it."

What we also discover is that MM appropriated these quotations and the Venus pencil advertisement just because they enabled her to argue dialectically for the simultaneous importance of meaning and tone of voice. Furthermore, in arguing for the importance of capturing tone of voice she isolated the shortcomings of imagism and anticipated contemporary poetic concerns, particularly those of Williams in his later work and of Charles Olson and Robert Bly who sought to capture in poems and on paper "that intonation in which the accents which are responsible for it are so unequivocal as to persist no matter under what circumstances the syllables are read or by whom they are read." Finally, and here the discovery of the unpublished section of the essay is most important, she anticipated by assembling her own bouquet of vocal exclamation points the method of some contemporary critics who attempt in their prose to mime the content of their essays.

Taffy Martin

Temple University

[page 20]

NOTES

1 MM, "Samuel Butler,"Chimaera, l(July 1916), 55-56.

2 Typescript, Rosenbach Foundation. Since MM did not note the deletion in her own copy of the MS, as was her usual practice, the cut was presumably made by Harriet Shaw Weaver at The Egoist.

3 MM, "The Accented Syllable," The Egoist, 3(October 1916), 151-152.

4 Justin Replogle, in an excellent study of MM's use of intonation ["Marianne Moore and the Art of Intonation," Contemporary Literature, 12(Winter 1971), 1-17] raises the question of the importance of meaning to intonation but seems not to have read MM on the same subject.

LIBRARY NOTES

UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS, AUSTIN

The Marianne Moore Collection at the Humanities Research Center contains many items of interest to scholars, collectors, and admirers of MM’s work. The collection can be divided into several categories 1} her manuscript works and correspondence; 2) association copies of her books; 3) limited, first, and subsequent editions of her books; 4) books and serials from her own library; 5) ephemera; 6) artistic works.

There are 27 catalog entries of her MS works, which are almost all in typescript with autograph emendations and notes. One of the outstanding items in this group is a typescript of the collection O to Be a Dragon (1959). Included are multiple copies of all the poems except the last one, "Leonardo da Vinci's," which was added to the collection as an afterthought, as MM indicated in a note at the foot of a draft of the table of contents. The HRC also has the corrected galley proofs for the book. One typescript of the poem "Melchior Vulpius" lists at the foot of the page an earlier, additional variant of the second stanza:

[page 21]

Ear-chained, we have to trust

this mastery - one which

none understands, yet someone has

acquired it and is able

to direct it." Mouse-bellow's-breath

expanding into rapture saith,

Although this particular variant was never printed, MM has the following note beside it: "(what I had first and I think it is better, smoother)."

The HRC holds the complete original typescript of MM’s only play, The Absentee (1962). Drafts, in some cases multiple, are held of the article "My Crow Pluto, the True Plato," and of the following poems: "An Expedient - Leonardo da Vinci's," "A Face," "The Fish," "Jamestown," "Rescue with Yul Brynner" (with her copy of the CBS television script of the same title), "A Talisman," and "To Victor Hugo of My Crow Pluto."

The most important of the typescripts of her critical articles and essays are "The Cantos," on Ezra Pound, and her review "Kora in Hell by William Carlos Williams."

The final items that should be mentioned in conjunction with her MS works are the corrected galley proofs of Selected Poems (London, 1935). It is interesting to note that the corrections are entirely in MM's hand, even the galleys to the introduction by T. S. Eliot.

A description of the remaining items in the Marianne Moore Collection at the HRC will appear in subsequent issues of MMN.

Douglas Haynes

The University of Texas at Austin

Courtesy of the

Humanities Research Center

AMHERST COLLEGE

Mr. John Lancaster reports that Amherst College Library has 37 MM letters to Louise Bogan, 1944-68;

[page 22]

4 to Rolfe Humpheries, 1957; 2 to Morrill Cody, 1959; and 17 to Dr. Jack W. C. Hagstrom. The letters to Miss Bogan contain comments about her reviews of MM’s books and MM's interests in Louise Bogan's work.

QUERIES

Can anyone tell us where to find the archive of the Dial Press (1920’s)? Mr. Donald Gallup reports that it is not at Yale where the Dial magazine archive is housed. MM’s Observations was published by the Dial Press, then located in the same building as the magazine and headed by Lincoln MacVeigh.

MM quoted passages from The Saints’ Everlasting Rest by Richard Baxter, Lippincott, 1909, according to her notes. However, that edition does not contain some of the passages she quoted. Does anyone know whether the book was used as a textbook at Yale, 1904-1908? If so, MM might have been reading a copy that belonged to her brother, a Yale student during those years.

In "Nine Nectarines" MM speaks of a "much-mended plate" painted with nine nectarines "in twos." Is the plate perhaps part of a museum collection in New York where MM might have seen it on display?

Can anyone account for the "medieval decorated hat-box" in "When I Buy Pictures?"

Why, in "Camellia Sabina," should Tom Thumb "the cavalry cadet" ride an "Italian upland meadow mouse?"

CHECKLIST CORRECTION

Borroff, Marie. "Dramatic Structure in the Poetry of Marianne Moore," Poetica: An International Journal (Tokyo), 1(1974), 72-83.

[page 23]

MM in Fort Greene Park, c. 1932

"Decorum marked life on Clinton Hill in the autumn of 1929 when my mother and I came to Brooklyn to live," MM says in her essay, "Brooklyn from Clinton Hill.” Dr. George Litch Knight, pastor of the Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church and MM's friend of many years, kindly told us that the current name of the area is Fort Greene Park (not Brooklyn Heights as our last issue stated). The park pictured above was formerly known as Washington Park and called so by MM.

Norman Wiltsie reports that the crosswise street in the picture is Washington Park (the name given the extension of Cumberland beyond DeKalb) at the corner of Willoughby Avenue. MM's famous 260 Cumberland Street address lies within walking distance of both the church and the park.

[page 24]

ANNOUNCEMENTS

MLA 1978, NEW YORK

A proposal for a special session on "Marianne Moore: Early Ideas and Images" has been presented to MLA and announced in the Spring MLA Newsletter. Decision on acceptance will be made in May. Inquiries about papers and panelists can be addressed to the editor of MMN.

IMAGES OF MARIANNE

An exhibition entitled "Images of Marianne" is planned for the winter of 78-79 at the Rosenbach Foundation in Philadelphia. It will include paintings, sculpture, drawings, portrait photographs, and other pictures of MM. The Rosenbach Foundation will be pleased to hear from readers of MMN about pictorial material concerning MM.

YOUR FIRST MM NEWSLETTER?

Our first MMN (Spring, 1977) described the Marianne Moore Collection at the Rosenbach Foundation, 2010 De Lancey Place, Philadelphia. It is from this Collection that the "Observations" in MMN are drawn.

MM’s livingroom is there, and her entire archive is open to scholars by appointment on weekdays, 9-5. Other visitors are welcome to see the MM room Tuesdays through Sundays, 2-5. The Rosenbach Foundation is closed during the month of August.

[inside back cover]

TO OUR READERS

Upon the printed page,

also by word of mouth,

we have a record of it all...

--Sea Unicorns and Land Unicorns

We ask our readers to use printed page or word of mouth to tell other MM aficionados about the Marianne Moore Newsletter. Complimentary copies available upon request: MMN, 2010 DeLancev Pl., Philadelphia, PA 19103.