New York: Horace Liveright, 1930. First Trade Edition. Hardcover. First Printing (second edition overall, following the Holland paper issue published in Paris) of this "landmark achievement in the genre of the modern long poem." (Literary Encyclopedia) Squarish demy 8vo (219 x 154mm): ,82pp, with frontispiece photograph of Brooklyn Bridge by Walker Evans. Publisher's fine bead dark blue cloth, upper cover and spine lettered in gilt, fore- and bottom edges rough-trimmed, title page in red and black. Printed on laid paper with "Utopian" watermark. An exceptional copy, tightly bound and clean throughout, virtually pristine. A fine copy, wanting the dust jacket. Modern Movement 64 ("masterpiece of neo-romanticism"). Schwartz & Schweik A3.1. Fine. Item #BB2257
First published in limited format, in Paris, by Harry Crosby’s Black Sun Press, in February, 1930, some six weeks before this Liveright issue with Crane's many corrections and alterations (especially with respect to "Cape Hatteras"), which was intended as the trade edition. Crosby's suicide in December 1929, while publication was still being arranged, was a sad portent of Crane's own tragic end two years later, when he leapt into the Gulf of Mexico from a ship bringing him back from Cuba to the United States. Walker Evans, whose photographs illustrate both editions, was then unknown. Crane began this attempt to investigate "the myth of America" with Ave Maria, "set aboard Columbus’s ship as he returns to Spain after discovering America. Later sections dealt with aspects of American history, myth, and folklore, moving into the modern age with its attendant technological and scientific advances. . . . while celebrating the symbols of man’s attempt to spiritually transcend the bounds of mortal existence, Crane also strives to deal with the limitations of progress." (Literary Encyclopedia) N. B. With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition, carefully preserved in archival, removable mylar sleeves. All orders are packaged with care and posted promptly. Satisfaction guaranteed. (Fine Editions Ltd is a member of the Independent Online Booksellers Association, and we subscribe to its codes of ethics.).