"A LANDMARK VOLUME IN MODERN AMERICAN POETRY": VERY SCARCE FIRST EDITION OF HARMONIUM, ONE OF ONLY 500 COPIES IN THE RARE FIRST BINDING
STEVENS, Wallace. Harmonium. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1923. Octavo, original half blue cloth, original checked paper boards, paper spine label. $4500.
First edition of Wallace Stevens' first collection of poems, one of only 500 copies in the rare first binding.
Although Stevens had been publishing poems in magazines for almost ten years, Harmonium, published when he was 44 years old, was his first collection. Harmonium includes some of Stevens' most famous poems, such as "The Emperor of Ice Cream," "Peter Quince at the Clavier," "Ploughing on Sunday," "Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird," "Sunday Morning," and "The Snow Man." "Harmonium is a landmark volume in modern American poetry… 'The poet's subject is his sense of the world,' Stevens once wrote…he believed in the ultimate value of imagination, in the ability of the imagination to transform reality" (Hamilton, 520). First issue, with red top edge. Without extremely scarce dust jacket. Edelstein A1a-1. Ink gift inscription; bookseller label on rear pastedown.
Text clean, small chip to corner of dedication leaf. Corners bumped, light flaking to paper along edges, spine label gently toned. A very attractive copy in the rare first binding.