Unpublished Frost poem set to appear

first_img 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! An unpublished Robert Frost poem, a tribute to a friend killed during World War I, has been rediscovered and will appear next week in the fall issue of the Virginia Quarterly Review, the University of Virginia announced Wednesday. “War Thoughts at Home” first emerged in 1918 when Frost inscribed it in a copy of “North of Boston,” his second collection. The poem was not seen again until a graduate student at the University of Virginia, Robert Stilling, recently spotted “War Thoughts” while looking through some Frost papers. A 1947 letter, by Frost’s friend, Frederick Melcher, referred to an “unpublished poem about the war which has not been reprinted,” but had been handwritten inside one copy of “North of Boston.” That book, Stilling soon learned, was part of the university’s Frost collection. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe Christmas Truce of 1914 proved that peace is possible“There, inscribed by Frost, was a poem that began with a `flurry of bird war’ and ended with a train of sheds laying `dead on a side track,”‘ Stilling writes in the Virginia Quarterly. Melcher was a longtime friend and supporter of Frost’s who became head of Publishers Weekly and helped establish the Newbery and Caldecott medals for children’s literature. Frost, the celebrated New England poet known for such verse as “The Road Not Taken” and “The Gift Outright,” spent much of World War I teaching English at Amherst College. At the start of the war, however, he had been living in England and befriended British poet Edward Thomas. Thomas volunteered when the war began and was killed in France in 1917. Seven stanzas long, Frost’s poem imagines a soldier’s wife in an old house at wintertime, late afternoon, when she is alarmed by the “rage” of some blue jays.last_img