November 12, 2013

The Gorgeous Nothings of Emily Dickinson

image via

I just came across The Gorgeous Nothings: Emily Dickinson's Envelope Poems (New Directions, October 2013) which is the first full-color publication Dickinson’s complete envelope writings. The book is in facsimile edition.

This presents her experimental late work exactly as she wrote it on scraps of envelopes. I had never heard that part of Emily's process. There are 52 poems reproduced life-size in full color, front and back, with an accompanying transcription to aid in the reading.

Conceived by the artist Jen Bervin and made possible by the extensive research of the Dickinson scholar Marta L. Werner, the book gives readers another way to view Emily Dickinson's work.

The Poetry Foundation has done several things to celebrate the publication including an interesting audio slideshow of these poems with voiceover commentary from the book’s editors and a visual artist from the gallery show - Forever— is composed of Nows— : Artworks Inspired by Emily Dickinson (Oct. 15 – Nov. 30) which highlights Emily Dickinson’s influence across artistic mediums. 

The November 2013 issue of Poetry magazine includes an excerpt from The Gorgeous Nothings, including editor Bervin’s introduction to the book. 
On Nov. 14 at the Poetry Foundation in Chicago, editors Jen Bervin and Marta Werner, will present text and images from their new book. 

There is also an exhibit at the Drawing Center in New York.

1 comment:

  1. It's a beautiful book. A limited edition costing several thousand dollars is available through Granary Books in New York City.


* * All comments must be approved by the site administrator before appearing in order to prevent spam.