The Ballad of the Harp-Weaver, 1991 first edition by Edna St. Vincent Millay, illustrated by Beth Peck.


Written by Edna St. Vincent Millay. Illustrated by Beth Peck. First edition thus, 1991. Philomel Books.

The indomitable Edna St. Vincent Millay (1892 - 1950) was the first woman to receive the Pulitzer Prize for poetry, in 1923, for The Ballad of the Harp-Weaver and Other Poems.

"Son," said my mother,
When I was knee-high,
"You've need of clothes to cover you
And not a rag have I.

"There' nothing in the house
To make a boy breeches,
Nor shears to cut a cloth with,
Nor thread to take stitches.

"There's nothing in the house
But a loaf-end of rye,
And a harp with a woman's head
Nobody will buy."
And she began to cry."

Front flap:

"Written for her own mother, Edna St. Vincent Millay's The Ballad of the Harp-Weaver is one of the most affecting poems ever created about the magical, mystical bond between a mother and child.

"The harp weaver: a poor woman with little to offer her son except her love. The son: a young boy who asks for nothing more. Though times are hard, their days together hold the joy of family and moments of music and joy. Then, one magical Christmas Eve night, the harp weaver creates a miracle, one that will forever tell the power of her love."

Artist Beth Peck was a graduate of the the Rhode Island School of Design, and her stunning work for this book is rich in its simplicity and poignancy.
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Condition: Fine/Near Fine. Dust jacket: Light shelf wear; shadow from a label on the back. Illustrated cover boards. Pages are clean, undamaged, and complete.

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