Gareth Reeves

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 133 CPA/2/1/58
  • Former Reference
      GB 133 Sequence 1, Box 36
  • Dates of Creation
      24 Aug [1970]-12 Nov 1976
  • Physical Description
      57 pieces; 102 sheets

Scope and Content

Correspondence with English poet and academic, Gareth Reeves, who with Schmidt and Peter Jones founded Carcanet Press. Topics include: Reeves's life as a postgraduate and subsequently a writing fellow at Stanford University; his acquaintance with Donald Davie at Stanford, Davie's views on Reeves's writing and other poetry (/3, /11-12, /17-18 and /22), and Davie's criticism of Schmidt's Ten English poets (1976) (/43); the establishment of Poetry Nation in 1973, and Reeves's contribution of essays and poems to the journal, including an essay entitled 'The Obstetrics of The waste land, which is included as an annotated typescript in /16; his comments on the first three issues of Poetry Nation (/11, /18 and /22); an ongoing debate with Schmidt about poetic form and self-expression in poetry, including references to poems by both Reeves and Schmidt, as well as Reeves's admiration for Larkin (/9-10, /12, /17-18 and /21-22); the possibility of Reeves publishing a poetry collection with Carcanet (/9-10 and /25); the work of C.H. Sisson and Jon Silkin (/17); Robert Graves, Laura Riding, and their influence on James Reeves (/23); Reeves's move to England in 1975; his employment by Schmidt at Carcanet; and his subsequent post at Durham University.

Letters /4 and /7-8 are from Reeves's father, poet James Reeves, and relate to the London poetry establishment and Peter Scupham's positive review of Reeves's poetry. /37-42 are invoices for freelance work carried out by Carole Reeves (Gareth Reeves's wife) for Carcanet Press during 1976.

The file includes typescript poems by Reeves (some in more than one copy) as follows: 'California Pepper-Tree' and 'Married Reserve', both marked up for printing (/1); photocopied typescripts of 'The Old Home' and 'Married Reserve' (/17); 'Henry James's Garden; Rye, Sussex' (/28); 'The Upland Grasses', 'Central Valley, California', 'A Stoic's Epitaph', 'Horace I, 11: Tu ne quaesieris' and 'Horace I, 37: Nunc est bibendum' (/33); 'The Garden' (/44); 'Silence' (/45); 'The Tourist Way: Anne Frank's House, Amsterdam' (/46); 'Henry James's Garden; Rye, Sussex' (/47); 'The Mentor' (/48); 'Epitaph of a Stoic' (/49); 'The Cemetery' (/50); 'At a Funeral' (/51); 'Pilgrims' (/52); 'Seaman' (/53); 'Below the Snowline' (/54); and translations 'Horace I, 11: Tue ne quaesieris', 'Horace I, 37: Nunc est bibendum' and 'Catullus 2: Passer deliciae meae puellae' (/55).

/57 is a typescript collection of poems by Reginald Gibbons entitled 'The Rebus (and other poems)', which was recommended to Schmidt by Reeves. This was originally stored together in a folder and some of the poems - presumably those accepted or favoured by Schmidt - have been pulled out of sequence and placed at the front.

Dated at: Amsterdam, Holland; Palo Alto, California, USA; and Santa Fé [New Mexico, USA].

Holograph and typescript.

Access Information

Piece /56 is closed to readers.