And now I’m ready to begin
I said
And he who had the power
Said
Oh no
Your option has expired
Long ago

– Harry Giles, from his book, Response

giles

I had found this book hidden between some old titles on a small bookshelf in an antique furniture store. From what research I’ve been able to do, this was a limited run of 250 copies, each inscribed and personalized to friends and relatives by the authors wife (?). The collection was most likely published after the author’s death.

The handwritten inscription in my copy reads:

August 8, 1975
Dear Emily,
I hope this little
book of Mikes’ poems brings
you joy and meaning.
He would want it too (sic).
The work is chosen from
those of his later life.
Love,
Mary

I’m not sure of the name “Mike” – may have been a nickname. Stories yet to be found and told…

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