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  • Poems 1906-1926 by Rainer Maria Rilke ; Translated by J.B. Leishman
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Poems 1906-1926 by Rainer Maria Rilke ; Translated by J.B. Leishman

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Norfolk, Conn.: New Directions, 1957. First American Edition. Hardcover. 402 pages ; 21 cm. $4.75 dust jacket. Very good copy; no underlines or markings within the pages. Satisfaction guaranteed!

Poems 1906 to 1926 by Rainer Maria Rilke

After the publication of the two parts of Neue Gedichte (New Poems) in 1907 and 1908, Rilke published no further collections of miscellaneous poems. Of the hundreds of uncollected poems which he wrote between 1906 and his death in 1926 he gave copies of many to his friends and he inscribed many in presentation copies of his own and other books, but he allowed only a few to make a fugitive appearance in print. A fairly large selection from them was published in 1934 as Spite Gedichte, of which, in 1938, a complete translation by Mr. Leishman, entitled Later Poems, was published by The Hogarth Press.

It was only gradually discovered that this selection represented a mere fraction of Rilke's poetic production during these twenty years. Thanks to the devoted labors of Professor Ernst Zinn, the Insel-Verlag was able to publish in 1953, with the title Gedichte 1906 bis 1926, a complete collection of all the then available poems written during this period which Rilke himself had not published in book form. In 1957 the contents of this volume, differently arranged and with the addition of various subsequently discovered poems and fragments, were included in the second volume of the new edition of Rilke's Sämtliche Werke, which is appearing under Professor Zinn's editorship.

The present volume is a complete translation of Gedichte 1906 bis 1926 and also of the additional German poems included in the second volume of
Sämtliche Werke. It contains two Indexes of Titles and First Lines, in German and in English with page references to both of these German editions. All the poems included in Later Poems, 1938, reappear, often in a considerably revised form; while hundreds of additional poems appear for the first time in English versions, All the poems have been arranged in one strict chronological sequence, which will enable the reader to follow, year by year and month by month, Rilke's poetic activity during the last twenty years of his life,