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Prose and poetry drafts by Ted Hughes

Add MS 88948/3/1 : [1950s-1960s]

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  • Title:
    Prose and poetry drafts by Ted Hughes
  • Collection Area: Western Manuscripts
  • Reference: Add MS 88948/3/1
  • Creation Date: [1950s-1960s]
  • Extent and Access:
    Extent: 1 folder

  • Language: English
  • Contents and Scope:

    Includes poetry and prose drafts some of which are unpublished as follows -


    1. 'Tolstoy at Emmanus in November': published in Lupercal under the title 'November'. There is some slight textual variation from the published version.

    2. 'Holy City' and 'The Sense of History': both were published in Lupercal as 'The Good Life' and 'Historian' respectively.

    3. 'Strawberry Hill', 'Hawk Roosting' and 'Snowdrop' (on verso): all three were published in Lupercal . There is slight variation between this draft of 'Strawberry Hill' and the published version. All three poems have been annotated and corrected.

    4. 'Dick Straightup' and 'Pennines in April': both were published in Lupercal . The second poem has a single handwritten correction. The draft of 'Dick Straightup' does not include the 'Obit.' section of the poem, which is part of the published version.

    5. 'Fire Eater' and 'Obit. for Dick Straightup': both were published in Lupercal , the second as part of 'Dick Straightup'. The second poem differs very slightly from the published version. On the verso there is the beginning of a sentence written by Hughes about the feast of Lupercal.

    6. 'Otter': published as 'An Otter' in Lupercal . The poem appears to correspond to the first part of 'An Otter' although there is some variation between this draft and the published version.

    7. 'Sunstroke' and 'A sequel to the otter one': the first is published in Lupercal whilst the second appears to be the second part of 'An Otter' (this differs very slightly from the published version).

    8. 'Pike': published in Lupercal .

    9. 'The Bull Moses' and 'Shells': the former was published in Lupercal and the latter in Ted Hughes Collected Poems as part of 'Uncollected Poems 1957-1959'. The first poem differs slightly from the published version.

    10. 'The Acrobats': differs slightly from 'Acrobats' published in Lupercal and includes an additional first verse. Hughes has added a note to the bottom of the draft stating that 'I wrote this too easily but I don't seem able to change it. But will'.

    11. 'Cat and Mouse' and 'To Paint A Waterlily' (on verso): the draft of 'Cat and Mouse' is extended and different from the published version in Lupercal, whilst 'To Paint A Waterlily' is the same as the published poem in that collection.

    12. 'Nocturne in February', 'Of Cats' and 'The Retired Colonel': the first differs slightly from the published version, 'February' in Lupercal . 'Of Cats' differs slightly from the version published in Lupercal as does the third verse of 'The Retired Colonel', which is also published in Lupercal .

    13. 'View Of A Pig' and 'Relic' (on verso): both are published in Lupercal (the first differs slightly).

    14. 'Modest Proposal' and 'The Heroes and the Bomber Pilot': both were published with slight variation in Hawk in the Rain as 'A Modest Proposal' and 'The Ancient Heroes and the Bomber Pilot'.

    15. 'Lines to a Newborn Baby': was published in Ted Hughes Collected Poems in 'Uncollected Poems 1960-1967' as two poems, 'Lines to a Newborn Baby' and 'To F.R. at Six Months'.

    16. 'Eden', 'Urn Burial' and 'Cat And Mouse': the latter two are published in Lupercal whilst the first is unpublished.

    17. 'Snatchcraftington addresses': an unpublished poem

    18. 'Lines in Mid-Air' and 'Wilfred Owen's Photographs' (verso): the first is unpublished and the second was published in Lupercal although this draft includes an additional verse not found in the printed version.


    19. 'The Captain's Speech': an excerpt from The House of Aries , a play broadcast on the BBC as part of the Third Programme. The excerpt was also published in Audience and Two Cities in 1961. Plath has noted two submissions on the left hand corner of the draft.

    20. Eighteen page autograph draft of a play, which is untitled and undated. Some annotations in green ink are included. The draft is written on the reverse of a number of different partial literary drafts as well as the title page of a play by David Compton ('Farmer's Men') and a partial review of poetry and prose by Michael Baldwin (Hughes was friends with both men). The literary drafts include two pages entitled 'Sparrow Desert', the poem 'Cars', which is unpublished and untitled and drafts of what may be reader's reports written by Hughes when he was working for the Rank Organisation.

    Arrangement: The poetry and prose have been arranged in separate acid free folders.

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