The Winding Stair and Other Poems and The Collected Poems

  • Richard J. Finneran


Yeats was in London from “about Oct 8” 1932 until he left for his American lecture tour on 21 October 1932 (L 802). As we have seen, he had with him a complete set of corrected page proofs for the Edition de Luxe Poems. I conjecture that Yeats met with his publishers on 19 or 20 October 1932. Among other things, he would have been seeking assurances that there would be no further delays in publishing the Edition de Luxe and that it would indeed appear in the spring of 1933, as Macmillan had suggested to him in a letter of 11 August 1932 (55731/405–7). When such assurances were not forthcoming, I believe that Yeats made a counter proposal: why not go ahead and publish Poems immediately in a trade edition, a Collected Poems? By the time the Edition de Luxe was ready to go forward, Yeats would have further poems to add to the collection, so that the publisher’s desire for new material in the Edition would be met. Moreover, the agreement with Ernest Benn was to expire in May 1933 (54902/4), and no new book of Yeats’s poems had been published in London since The Tower (1928). Yeats must have been convincing, as on 20 October 1932 Macmillan wrote to Watt about “a new proposal which Mr. Yeats has made to me” (55733/424).


British Library American Edition Page Proof Complete Edition Collect Poem 
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© Richard J. Finneran 1983

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  • Richard J. Finneran

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