The following announcement is from Horowitz Bookseller in New York. Please contact www.glennhorowitz.com for more information regarding these facsimilie notebooks. The text below is from a flyer; please forgive the loss of formatting from one
electronic file to the other.
--Betsy Rose, NPF
Drafts & Fragments
Facsimile edition of six of Pound’s manuscript notebooks for
Drafts and Fragments, presenting Pound’s earliest concept
for the Paradiso section that ends his Cantos, in a version so true
to the original that the reader will want to touch each page to
feel the impression of Pound’s pen in the paper, the dampness of
his fresh ink, his embossed address, the pasted-in postage stamps.
For years, these six notebooks were hidden away. Pound had given
five to his son-in-law Boris de Rachewiltz, who placed them in a
safety deposit box where they remained until after his death. Pound
had given a sixth inscribed notebook to Marcella Spann Booth,
whose copy was also stored in a bank vault. Booth, who studied
with Pound in his “Ezrology” class at St. Elizabeths Hospital and
collaborated with him on the anthology Confucius to Cummings,
served as his secretary while he worked in these notebooks.
A supplemental volume includes a preface by the publisher,
Glenn Horowitz, and an Introduction and Notes on the Manuscripts
by Booth. All present information new to scholars, including
new details of the history of the manuscripts that lead to
Drafts and Fragments.
Booth also offers a new reading of Pound’s final Cantos: that
the carefully crafted fragments, their power rooted in the inherent
promise of nature, bring The Cantos to a fitting conclusion; they reveal
the poet’s struggle to claim for himself, for those he loves, and
for his readers the kind of love, reverence, and humility suited to
his Paradiso. We see this exemplified in his final notebook. Bowed
and humbled by grief, Pound measures his life’s work, presenting
anew the enlightened sensibility that crafted The Cantos:
But the sense
of awe is
The bright moment
before I died
I had & given
Fr om the Publisher’s Preface:
… During the years of our acquaintance Mary asked me to assist
her in finding new homes for various Pound books and papers.
But in this instance her interest wasn’t transactional, but rather
documentary: for years, she explained, she had wanted, to quell
critics who had accused her of withholding elements of Pound’s
heritage, to see the notebooks printed in an exact facsimile, down to
reproducing the decorated wrappers of the Italian schoolboy notebooks
in which Pound had drafted these great, final, elegiac Cantos….
From the Introduction by Marcella Spann Booth:
…It is interesting to see what Pound retains in the published
text and what he omits. The editing process is mostly that of
condensation: the text is reduced to concentrated, definitive images
that resonate in the reader’s mind. We are led from moments of
deep despair when the Paradiso seems beyond Pound’s reach to
scenes of infinite beauty in which he not only sees paradise, he
lives it. Thread after thread of what has gone before is woven
into his new material. The evil of Usury is brought back; “the
corrupter of all things” is given a Canto unto itself. This fragment
from an earlier year (1941), thrust suddenly into the paradise
section of The Cantos, is only seemingly out of context. Even in
the sacred grove “the defiler” is still at work. Its hidden power
has to be acknowledged: “All other sins are open, / Usura alone
not understood.” Pound achieves in his poem the only victory
possible. He fences in the monster’s evil with images of light: only
the enlightened heart can combat the sin of greed that threatens to
overwhelm our world….
From Booth’s Notes on the Manuscripts:
…Readers of the notebooks should take care to view all the pages.
Pound often records entries and will then skip pages before adding
new lines. He often writes on the verso of his inscribed pages, at
times on the verso of blank ones, which makes them all the more
difficult to spot. In Notebook 5, there is a line on the back of each
of the last two blank leaves in my handwriting. These lines are
not what E. P. would consider “cantobile,” i.e., good enough for his
Cantos, but they are indicative of his talk. I must have thought
the comments promising enough to preserve, so I wrote them into
his notebook – on the verso so as not to take up his writing space.
The two colors of ink indicate two separate conversations.
Five hundred copies of Ezra Pound’s Drafts and Fragments:
Facsimile Notebooks 1958-1959 have been printed on Mohawk
paper under the direction of Jerry Kelly. Price: $350.00
To order contact:
Glenn Horowit z Bookse ller , Inc .
7 West 18th St., Fl. 6 · New York, NY 10011
t: 212-691-9100 F: 212-691-9109
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