New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1971. First Printing. Hardcover. First Edition (so stated), edited by Donald Allen, with Introduction by John Ashbery, in the suppressed first-issue dust jacket. Tall, thick 8vo: xxix,,586,pp. Publisher's coarsely woven oatmeal-colored cloth, spine and upper cover lettered in gilt (later states of binding had blind-stamped lettering), decorative end papers, top edge stained pale lime-green, fore-edge untrimmed; pictorial jacket (featuring Larry Rivers's full frontal nude portrait of the poet with penis erect), with publisher's code 10/71 on rear flap. A superb production in Fine condition, tight, square, and unmarked; About Fine jacket (price-clipped), vivid and bright. Fine / Fine-. Item #BB1689
From the dust jacket flap: "This collection bring together for the first time all of the poems that have so far been discovered—more than five hundred . . . " In fact, tales are told of O’Hara’s friends finding his poems stuffed into sock drawers and of O’Hara writing some of his best-known poems in the middle of a party, on the Staten Island Ferry, during lunch breaks. "Such casualness regarding publication and composition became part of O’Hara’s ‘official’ poetics in his mock-manifesto ‘Personism,' in which he deduced, ‘While I was writing [a poem] I was realizing that if I wanted to I could use the telephone instead of writing the poem.'" (The Literary Encyclopedia) It seems something of a minor miracle, then, that this important collection ever saw the light of day. Note: With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition, with dust jackets carefully preserved in archival, removable polypropylene sleeves. All orders are packaged with care and posted promptly. Satisfaction guaranteed.