The Collected Poems of Delmore Schwartz (Hardcover)

The Collected Poems of Delmore Schwartz By Delmore Schwartz, Ben Mazer (Editor) Cover Image

The Collected Poems of Delmore Schwartz (Hardcover)


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The first complete collection of the poetry of Delmore Schwartz, “the most underrated poet of the twentieth century" (John Berryman).

When Delmore Schwartz published his first short story, “In Dreams Begin Responsibilities,” in Partisan Review in 1937, he became an instant literary celebrity. After the appearance of his first book (by the same name), he was inundated with praise. The famed poet Allen Tate wrote to him, “Your poetic style is beyond any doubt the first real innovation that we’ve had since Eliot and Pound,” and T. S. Eliot himself wrote Schwartz a letter asking him to compose more poetry. The brilliant start of his career is matched perhaps only by its tragic end, a lonely death after an extended period of alcoholism, depression, and derangement. Today, more than fifty years after his death in 1966, Schwartz is often remembered for the tragedy of his life rather than for the innovation and sad brilliance of his greatest work.

This book brings together all of Schwartz’s poetry for the very first time, from his groundbreaking debut collection to his unpublished late work, which he kept writing until his death. Accompanied by Ben Mazer’s illustrative notes and introduction, The Collected Poems of Delmore Schwartz offers readers the long-awaited opportunity to rediscover one of the most influential and original poets of the twentieth century. As Mazer writes in his introduction, “It is the poems that count now. And it is the glory of the poems that survives here, awaiting new life.”

Delmore Schwartz (1913–1966) was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. A brilliant poet, short-story writer, and literary talent, he contributed “In Dreams Begin Responsibilities” to the first issue of Partisan Review. His books include Shenandoah and Other Verse Plays; the works of poetry Genesis: Book One and Summer Knowledge; and the short-fiction collections The World Is a Wedding and Successful Love and Other Stories. Schwartz taught at Syracuse, Princeton, and Kenyon College, and received the Bollingen Prize in 1959.

Ben Mazer was born in New York City and was raised in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He was educated at Harvard University, where he studied with Seamus Heaney, and he took his MA and PhD in critical editing and textual scholarship under Christopher Ricks and Archie Burnett at the Editorial Institute at Boston University. Mazer is the author of nearly a dozen collections of poetry, and he is the editor of The Collected Poems of John Crowe Ransom and Selected Poems of Frederick Goddard Tuckerman, among other works. He lives in Cambridge.
Product Details ISBN: 9780374604301
ISBN-10: 0374604304
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication Date: April 2nd, 2024
Pages: 720
Language: English

“The emblematic tortured poet, Schwartz is worth reading not simply for what he achieved but for what he made possible.” —Maggie Doherty, The New Yorker

"Unearthed here is Schwartz’s masterpiece, a two-part autobiographical poem in free verse, 'Genesis,' which he worked on for more than a decade. It’s so squirming and alive that it will, I suspect, be the rock upon which future considerations of Schwartz will stand." —Dwight Garner, The New York Times Book Review