Collected Shorter Poems 1927-1957.New York: Random House, 1968 Stock Code: 146844
First US edition, second printing, familiarly inscribed by the author using his first name reserved for friends, "For Bill with love from Wystan. Feb. 1970", his printed name struck through. Auden has also annotated this copy with a missing line on p. 27 in the poem "Easy Knowledge".
The recipient Dr William ("Woods") Shelton Gray, Jr (1926-1993) fostered friendships with major literary figures such as Auden and T. S. Eliot, and on one occasion met Ezra Pound. Auden dedicated the poem "The Aliens" to Gray, toured Europe with him, and in 1971 found him a position as a visiting lecturer in American Literature at the University of Graz in Austria.
This work was first published in the US the year before and originally published in the UK in 1966.
Octavo. Original orange quarter cloth, green cloth sides, titles to spine and front cover in gilt and purple, top edge green, bottom edge untrimmed. With dust jacket.
Tiny splashmarks to top edge, a near-fine copy in the poor dust jacket, spine toned, minor soiling, some nibbling and insect damage to panels, not price-clipped.
Bloomfield and Mendelson A56b.
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