At the outset I must confess that the present endeavor owes its
existence firstly to world-wide-web and in equal measure to the initial
support and cooperation received from Mr. Fred Sasaki, Assistant
Editor of Poetry, Chicago and his team.
It was almost three years ago that I came across the website of
Poetry. While working on the English Gitanjali, I had come across
excerpts from an article Ezra Pound had written about Tagore and
published in Poetry. I requested for a copy of the complete article. Fred
Sasaki promptly provided me with a scanned copy of the article, sent
me all references to Tagore in Dear Editor: A History of POETRY in
Letters, edited by Joseph Parisi and Stephen Young and gifted me with
one year's subscription to Poetry. Subsequently, while sending me the
scanned pages containing all the Tagore poems published in different
issues of Poetry, spread over four years (1912-16), he also directed
me to David Pavelich, Bibliographer for Modern Poetry at University
of Chicago Library, where Harriet Monroe, Harriet Moody and
Poetry papers are available. It was David Pavelich who provided me
with scans of Tagore poems submitted co Poetry along with letters of
Tagore addressed to Harriet Monroe.
Study of these scanned images revealed:
1. Text of Tagore poems published in Poetry differs from the text in
published versions of these poems.
2. In one instance, two Tagore poems have been published in Poetry
as a single poem.
3. There may be some hitherto unknown English poems -
translated or otherwise — by Tagore in these papers.
4. Alice Oliver Henderson, six year old daughter of Alice Corbin
Henderson, Assistant Editor of Poetry, was ‘Tagore's ‘Fairy
Queen; ‘Alice in Wonderland’ etc.
It was at the instance of Professor Swapan Majumdar thar a
detailed report on this subject was undertaken. For all the assistance
and information received I am indeed indebted to Fred Sasaki and
Gina Rosemellia at Poetry Foundation, Chicago, David Pavelich, at
University of Chicago Library at Chicago, Elspeth Healey, Public
Services Intern, at Harry Ransom Centre, University of Texas, Austin
and of course Professor Swapan Majumdar. Ms. Supriya Roy was also
helpful in checking the archives of Rabindra Bhavana on my behalf as
was Utpal Micra. I express my sincere gratitude to all of them.
It was Poetry that introduced Tagore to the American literary
scene and through Poetry, he developed personal contacts which were
mutually cherished for a long time. I hope the present endeavor
illuminates Tagore’s Poetry connection and will be useful to future
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