THE NATIONAL POETRY
SAMUEL FRENCH MORSE
Guy Rotella, Editor
Samuel French Morse was born in Salem, Massachusetts, in 1916, to an old New England family. He graduated from Dartmouth in 1936 and received an A.M. in English from Harvard in 1938 and a Ph.D. from Boston University in 1952. From 1962 until shortly before his death in 1985, he taught at Northeastern University in Boston. Throughout his life he and his wife Jane summered at Hancock Point in Maine, and his poetry is saturated with the sights, sounds, and smells of northern New England. Morse began to publish poetry in the late 1930s, and his first book, Time of Year, appeared in 1943, with a preface by Wallace Stevens. This book was followed by four additional collections, and at the time of his death he was preparing a fifth collection. He won the Emily Clark Balch and the Arthur Davison Ficke prizes for poetry.
The Collected Poems reprints all of Morse's earlier collections and adds to them ninety pages of previously uncollected poems. An eleven page introduction by the editor, Morse's friend and colleague Guy Rotella, places the poems within the context both of the poet's life and of the literary cross-currents of the period from 1940 to the present. This collection promises to bring to a new audience one of the richest lyric voices of our time.
"When Sam Morse and I were in college together, I wanted to write as well as Sam wrote. Now, all these many years later, I'd still like to do that." --William Bronk
"Morse's lucidity of vision, acuity of ear, and impeccable cadences combine with his native common sense to give his readers the unusual pleasure of entering with him a world perceived freshly and knowingly." -- Constance Hunting
"Morse never plays intellectual games with his readers, but is
basically a reflective poet, feeling, with Stevens, 'a rage for
order' in his own trees and fields. . . . The best of these poems
have the hallmark of a true poetry which is wholly Morse's own."
1995 355 pages Cloth $45.00 (0-943373-34-4)
Paper $24.95 (0-943373-35-2)
A volume in the Phoenix Series.