11 October 2002
CUMMINGS, Edward Estlin. Tulips and Chimneys. New York: Thomas Seltzer, 1923.
8o. Original linen-backed purple boards, printed paper spine label (spine a little sunned, label lightly soiled). Provenance: Francis W. Sever (presentation inscription; inkstamp on front pastedown).
FIRST EDITION. PRESENTATION COPY, INSCRIBED BY CUMMINGS TO A HARVARD TEACHER on the front free endpaper: "Mr. Seaver [sic] with the compliments of the author E.E. Cummings Xmas 1923." Sever was Cummings's Harvard tutor. Cummings began his five years at Harvard in 1911 and left with an A.M in English. This volume collects many examples of his college writing.
Cyril Connolly notes: "The years 1920-25 were for [Cummings] one long manic outpouring of passion, contempt and the joy of living. His typographical capers freshen his otherwise conventional verse forms, but sometimes pall. Of all the members of the American avant-garde who did not die young like Crane or West, Cummings remained the most dans la vrai, the most consistent and uncompromising in his adherence to the Baudelairean concept of the poetic life..." (Connolly, The Modern Movement 47a). Firmage A3.
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