Deep River: The Complete Poems of Archibald Rutledge. Published by The R. L. Bryan Company, Columbia, South Carolina (1960, Revised 1966). 635pp. 6 x 9.5 inches. Hardcover.
A native of McClellanville, South Carolina, Dr. Archibald Rutledge stands among the most highly regarded of contemporary American poets. Proclaimed poet Laureate for the state of South Carolina in 1934, Dr. Rutledge has become the author of 80 volumes of poetry and prose; his works now fill anthologies and textbooks across the United States. The intense lucidity of his writing draws interest from not only those of his native Deep South but also from those of England and other foreign countries.
Exhibiting a passion for clarity, Dr. Rutledge has presented the world of southern literature with books such as Life's Extras, My Colonel and His Lady, Brimming Tide, and Home by the River. His works have received more than 30 gold medals; he is the recipient of more than 20 honorary degrees.
The molding of the poet began at home when his perceptive mother noted the boy's love of nature and at the young age of three Rutledge presented her with his first poem. The early years spent at his plantation home, an ancient house surrounded by a sea of camellias, were followed by study at Union College in Schenectady, New York. During his time there as a Lorillard Scholar, Dr. Rutledge continued his writings, later to see his work appearing in several national magazines before he had reached the age of 20.
Deep River, a collection of the complete poems of Archibald Rutledge, met its first publication in 1960. In the book the pet reveals what a leading South Carolinian has termed “A Love Affair With Life.” The collection is his best work for it gives the reader a candid and touching representation of the mind of Rutledge. He is the minstrel singing of nature in such poems as “In a Forest.” He is the poet of love in such sonnets as “The Miracle” and “The Light.” He is the religious writer in such works as “Night and God” and “Testimony.” He is the gentle singer of the south, but the song he sings is a song for the people of the world.
The R. L. Bryan Company takes pleasure in bringing to the reader a revised edition of Deep River, containing the works appearing in the former publication with additional selections. When the poet himself says, “Now just one little song here — one more,” the people are ready to listen.
Archibald Rutledge (1883–1973) was South Carolina's first poet laureate, and a prolific and beloved writer of out-of-doors prose, with over 80 books published.
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