The First Art Newspaper on the Net Established in 1996 United States Friday, August 29, 2014


Plymouth State University Acquires Celebrated Poet Robert Frost's Letters to Pal
One of several letters written by the young not-yet-famous poet Robert Frost. Plymouth State University, where he once taught, is celebrating the 100th anniversary of the poet's time on campus. AP Photo/Plymouth State University.

By: Holly Ramer, Associated Press

CONCORD, N.H. (AP).- Writing from England as World War I got under way, Robert Frost was more worried about his personal finances than the threat of war.

"This row was exciting at first. But it has lost some of its interest for us," the poet wrote to his friend Ernest Silver in August 1914, just weeks after Great Britain declared war on Germany. "Not that I think the Germans will come. I bet one of my little amateur bets that other day that not one of them would set foot in England."

The letter is one of six recently donated to Plymouth State University in New Hampshire, where Frost taught for a year before moving to England in 1912. His reputation as a poet grew after the publication of his first book a year later, but Frost still worried about how he would provide for his family upon returning to the United States.

"I wonder if I can count on your friendship to help me to some place where I can recoup. You know the kind of thing I should like — something in the English department, if possible, where I should have some energy to spare for my poetry," he wrote. "I can probably hang on another year if I have to, but there will be the more need in the end of my finding work because by that time I shall be in debt."

In another letter dated Feb. 2, 1915, Frost said he was considering moving to Vermont or Maine to be near friends. "But money is really going to be short and we must go where we can go with a reasonable chance of making ends meet," he wrote.

Frost, the celebrated New England poet known for such verse as "The Road Not Taken" and "The Gift Outright," met Silver at Pinkerton Academy in Derry, where Silver was the high school principal and Frost taught English. When Silver became the president of what was then known as Plymouth Normal School, he invited Frost to come teach education and psychology.

But after a decade of teaching combined with unsuccessful farming, Frost's move to England marked his shift toward poetry as a vocation, said Alice Staples, librarian for the archives and special collections at Plymouth State. The letters come from a time in which Frost faced a choice not unlike the dilemma posed in 1916's "The Road Not Taken," she said.

In England, Frost befriended other literary greats, including William Butler Yeats and Ezra Pound. In a May 7, 1913, letter, he described Yeats' manner as being "like that of a man in some dream he can't shake off," and called Pound "the dazzling youth who translates poetry from six languages."

"Someone says he looks altogether too much like a poet to be a poet," Frost wrote of Pound. "He lives in Bohemia from hand to mouth but he goes simply everywhere in great society."

Frost also described reading Yeats to students in Plymouth before meeting the poet overseas, a detail Plymouth State University President Sara Jayne Steen found particularly striking.

"To think that he was bringing such a contemporary writer to the students and working with them, and then to think how exciting that must've been for him, to be in a position where he could meet and talk with the man he had just been teaching," Steen said.

The letters, which have not been published before, were donated privately to the university, Steen said. To mark the 100th anniversary of Frost's time on campus, the school has set up a display including audio of Frost reading his poetry along with photos and other memorabilia.

"There could hardly be anything more perfect in the centennial year of Robert Frost and Ernest Silver coming to Plymouth than to have the letters that were part of that correspondence come to us," Steen said.

Frost returned to the U.S. in 1915. In addition to his connection to Plymouth, the letters also show how Frost's time in England solidified his identity as a New Englander, Staples said. (Frost was born in California but moved to New England as a child.)

Though accustomed to New Hampshire's harsh winters, Frost complained that he'd rather be stuck in snow than the mud that surrounded him that spring in England.

"My original theory was that mud here took the place of snow at home. It is worse than that. Mud here takes the place of everything at home. ... We had three hours sunshine last week a thing so remarkable that it set the ladies cooing over their tea, 'Don't you think the English is a much maligned climate?'"

"I suppose the amount of it is that I am home-sick, and so not disposed to like anything foreign," he concluded. "Twenty-five years in New England have made very much of a damned Yankee of me."

Frost, who won four Pulitzer Prizes for poetry, died in 1963.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.



Today's News

April 7, 2011

Christie's Backs Stubbs to Join Old Masters Elite, Painting Expected to Fetch $33 Million

Former Lawrence Salander Gallery Director Guilty in Case with De Niro as Witness

Sotheby's Sets Record for an Islamic Work of Art at Auction with £7.4 Million Sale

Museum of Modern Art Releases Free iPad App for Downloading MoMA E-Books

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Reaches Purchase Agreement for 17th-Century Tapestries

Westervelt Collection To Highlight Christie's American Paintings Sale May 18

Bonhams in London Hammers Bronze into Gold in Chinese Art Sale Next Month

Sotheby's London Sale of Contemporary Turkish Art Realises Total of £2.3 Million

Brooch that Belonged to Queen Victoria Reigns Over Bonhams Jewellery Sale

First Exhibition to Focus on Motif of the Open Window in 19th Century Art at Metropolitan Museum

New Version of the Two-Man Orchestra Led by Wilhelm Bruck and Matthias Würsch at Museum Tinguely

Asia Week New York 2011 Announces Sales Over $250 Million, Double and Triple Attendance

Silvio Berlusconi and Moroccan Teenage Lover Ruby on Auction at Milan Art Dealer

Kresge Foundation Launches Art X Detroit to Celebrate Artistic Excellence and the City's Creative Spirit

Chinese Government Dismisses International Concerns Over Missing Artist Ai Weiwei

Exhibition at Topography of Terror Documentation Center Marks 50 Years Since Eichmann Trial

Revealed: Swiss Architect Peter Zumthor's Design for 11th Serpentine Gallery Pavilion

United States Library to Save Famous Baseball, Country Tunes

Antiquities, Arms and Armour, Arts and Crafts at Hermann Historica's 61st Auction

Plymouth State University Acquires Celebrated Poet Robert Frost's Letters to Pal

Exhibition of 17th-Century Floral Splendour at Rijksmuseum's Branch at Schiphol Airport

Hockney, Warhol, and Diebenkorn Highlight Bonhams & Butterfields' Fine Prints Auction

Melissa Martens Named New Director of Exhibitions at Museum of Jewish Heritage

Amy Brandt, Ph.D. Joins Chrysler Museum as McKinnon Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Launches Newly Redesigned Website

Duelling Pistols at Bonhams: Objects of Beauty and Death

Germany Relaxes Restrictions on Reichstag Visits

Jordan Wants to Retrieve Major Christian Relics

Kurt Cobain Guitar Sculpture Dedicated in Washington

Most Popular Last Seven Days



1.- Neanderthals and humans were both living in Europe for between 2,600 and 5,400 years

2.- First major exhibition to explore the historical legacy of African cultural astronomy opens at LACMA

3.- Carlo Mollino's idealized vision of the female form in new book published by Damiani/Crump

4.- Tate Britain displays works by Frank Auerbach from the collection of Lucian Freud

5.- In grave robber territory, locals abuzz over Alexander-era tomb; Largest of its kind ever discovered in Greece

6.- Lambert Collection opens an ambitious project housed at the Sainte-Anne Prison

7.- Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore announces the first 18 artists in the CCA Residencies progamme

8.- Historic Kings Theatre is transformed into major New York Performing Arts venue

9.- Thirteen's American Masters Series co-produces new documentary about photographer Dorothea Lange

10.- Sotheby's New York to offer 548 Edward Weston photographs as a single lot this September



Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 

Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez - Marketing: Carla Gutiérrez
Special Contributor: Liz Gangemi - Special Advisor: Carlos Amador
Contributing Editor: Carolina Farias

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org theavemaria.org juncodelavega.org facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site