Page images

Tempe by Madison Cawein, and the poems from The Old Huntsman, Counter-Attack and Picture Show by Siegfried

Sassoon. Four Seas COMPANY—for the quotations from The Charnel Rose

and The House of Dust by Conrad Aiken, for the poem from

War and Love by Richard Aldington. HARCOURT, Brace & COMPANY—for the selections from A Mis

cellany of American Poetry-1920; Canzoni and Carmina by T. A. Daly, Smoke and Steel by Carl Sandburg, Challenge and The New Adam by Louis Untermeyer, Cross Currents by Margaret Widdemer, Nets to Catch the Wind by

Elinor Wylie, The Contemplative Quarry by Anna Wickham. HARPER & BROTHERS—for the selection from Fables for the

Frivolous by Guy Wetmore Carryl. HARR WAGNER PUBLISHING CO.—for the selections from The

Complete Poetical Works of Joaquin Miller. Henry Holt & COMPANY—for the selections from Wilderness

Songs by Gșace Hazard Conkling, Peacock Pie and The Listeners by Walter de la Mare, A Boy's Will, North of Boston, and Mountain Interval by Robert Frost, Chicago Poems and Cornhuskers by Carl Sandburg, Poems by Edward Thomas, These Times by Louis Untermeyer, and Factories by

Margaret Widdemer. The selections from The Complete Poems of Thomas Bailey

Aldrich, The Complete Works of Bret Harte, The Shoes That Danced by Anna Hempstead Branch, Davy and the Goblin by Charles E. Carryl, Grimm Tales Made Gay by Guy Wetmore Carryl, Poems 1908-1919 by John Drinkwater, Riders of the Stars and Songs of the Trail by Harry Herbert Knibbs, Poems and Poetic Dramas by William Vaughn Moody, Lyrics of Joy by Frank Dempster Sherman, Poems by Edward Rowland Sill, Sea Garden by “H. D.," and the quotations from Some Imagist Poets-1916 and Some Imagist Poets1917 are used by permission of, and by special arrangement with HOUGHTON MIFFLIN COMPANY, the authorized pub

lishers. B. W. HUEBSCH-for the selections from Poems by Wilfred

Owen, Amores and New Poems by D. H. Lawrence, The Ghetto and Sun-Up by Lola Ridge, Optimos by Horace Traubel, Growing Pains and Dreams out of Darkness by Jean Starr Untermeyer.

ALFRED A. KNOPF-for the selections from A Canticle of Pan

by Witter Bynner, Collected Poems by W. H. Davies, Fairies and Fusiliers and Country Sentiment by Robert Graves, Poems: First Series by J. C. Squire, Colors of Life by Max Eastman, Asphalt and Other Poems by Orrick Johns, Mushrooms by Alfred Kreymborg, Songs for the New Age, by James Oppenheim, Lustra by Ezra Pound, Profiles from China

by Eunice Tietjens. John LANE COMPANY—for the selections from Poems by G. K.

Chesterton, Ballads and Songs by John Davidson, The Collected Poems of Rupert Brooke, Admirals All by Henry Newbolt, Lyrics and Dramas by Stephen Phillips, The Hope of

the World and Other Poems by William Watson. LITTLE, BROWN & COMPANY—for the selections from Poems and

PoemsThird Series by Emily Dickinson. THE MACMILLAN COMPANY—for the selections from The Congo

and Other Poems and The Chinese Nightingale by Vachel Lindsay, Sword Blades and Poppy Seed and Pictures of the Floating World by Amy Lowell, Spoon River Anthology by Edgar Lee Masters, The Quest by John G. Neihardt, The Man Against the Sky by Edwin Arlington Robinson, Love Songs and Flame and Shadow by Sara Teasdale, Fires and Borderlands by W. W. Gibson, Poems by Ralph Hodgson, Good Friday and Other Poems and the passage from “Dauber"

in The Story of A Round-House by John Masefield. THE MANAS Press—for the selections from Verse by Adelaide

Crapsey. THOMAS B. MOSHER—for the selections from A Quiet Road and

A Wayside Lute by Lizette Woodworth Reese. The New REPUBLIC—for the poem by Ridgeley Torrence. PAGAN PUBLISHING COMPANY—for two poems from Minna and

Myself by Maxwell Bodenheim. THE POETRY BOOKSHOP (England)—for the excerpts from

Strange Meetings and Children of Love by Harold Monro, The Farmer's Bride by Charlotte Mew and the poems re

printed from the biennial anthologies, Georgian Poetry. 'G. P. PUTMAN'S Sons—for the title-poem from In Flanders

Fields by John McCrae. A. M. ROBERTSON—for the sonnet from The House of Orchids

by George Sterling. CHARLES SCRIBNER'S Sons—for the selections from Poems by

[ocr errors]

Henry Cuyler Bunner, Poems by Eugene Field, Poems by William Ernest Henley, Poems of Sidney Lanier, The Children of the Night and The Town Down the River by

Edwin Arlington Robinson, and Poems by Alan Seeger. FRANK SHAY—for the quotation from Figs from Thistles by

Edna St. Vincent Millay. SHERMAN, FRENCH & COMPANY—for the two poems from The

Human Fantasy and Love and Liberation, by John Hall

Wheelock. SMALL, MAYNARD & COMPANY—for the selections from Ballads

of Lost Haven by Bliss Carman, Along the Trail by Richard Hovey, Songs from Vagabondia and More Songs from Vaga

bondia by Richard Hovey and Bliss Carman. F. A. STOKES COMPANY—for the selections from War Is Kind

by Stephen Crane, Grenstone Poems by Witter Bynner, and

Poems by a Little Girl by Hilda Conkling. STURGIS & WALTON COMPANY—for the poem from Monday

Morning by James Oppenheim. THE YALE REVIEW—for “The Onset” by Robert Frost and “Two

Songs for Solitude" by Sara Teasdale. The YALE UNIVERSITY Press—for selections from Young Ad

venture by Stephen Vincent Benét and The Burglar of the Zodiac by William Rose Benét.


"Modern" is, perhaps, the most misleading adjective in the dictionary. There is no term in any language that is more fluctuant and elusive, that shifts its meanings with greater rapidity, that turns its back so quickly upon those ardent champions who defended it most stubbornly. The present merges so swiftly into the past that today's definition of modernity may seem, after the shortest of intervals, an impertinent apology for some safely enshrined classicism. Numberless critics have been haunted by the knowledge that the outrageous heresy of to-day is often the orthodox dogma of to-morrow.

And yet, though one should not use hard and fast rules when measuring so fluid a thing as time, one must at least be arbitrary about the years when making an anthology. A "modern" compilation is no exception. Although it is difficult to draw a line between periods of literary activity—and particularly of poetry—the task is made somewhat easier by the advent of Walt Whitman in America and the close of the Victorian Era in England. It would have been pleasant to divide the poetry of this dual collection into groups and distinct tendencies. Unfortunately, such a scheme would give the reader a series of impressions that would be contradictory and, in the final effect, false. One should not attempt to ticket contemporary writers (on whom the chief emphasis is placed in this volume) with conclusive labels, especially since so many of the writers are still developing. One cannot give a true picture of a period in the state of flux except by showing its fluid character. It has been the editor's aim to reflect this very Aux and diversity.

Since the chronological arrangement is, in spite of certain disadvantages, the only logical one, an arbitrary boundary has been fixed. Conceiving modern British poetry to begin after the fertile Tennyson-BrowningRossetti-Swinburne epoch, the year 1840 is made to act as dividing-line; any poet born before that date is ruthlessly excluded. In the case of American poetry, the line has been moved back ten years. Thus, by including work of poets born in this country as early as 1830, a richer background has been given the poetry of our times; and, although some of the interval poets like Aldrich and Lanier could scarcely be considered "modern," it is curious to see how wide and how completely the circle has swung since Walt Whitman startled the world with Leaves of Grass. The first part of this collection might well be called, "American Poetry since Whitman" for the poet who has often been called the godfather of the new generation ended one period and began another.

It is a happy circumstance that this volume should begin with the poetry of Emily Dickinson (born 1830) whose work, printed for the first time after her death, was unknown as late as 1890 and unnoticed until several years later. For hers was a forerunner of the new spirit --free in expression, unhampered in choice of subject, keen in psychology—to which a countryful of writers has responded. No longer confined to London, Boston or New York as literary centers, the impulse to create is everywhere. There is scarcely a state, barely a township that has not produced its local laureate.

The notes preceding the poems are intended to support and amplify this geographical as well as biographical range. It is instructive as well as interesting to see what

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »