22 July 2013

The Heart Accepts It All in the Rural Mail

Copies of The Heart Accepts It All: Selected Letters of John Glassco, edited and annotated by yours truly, arrived at our home on Friday – brought, appropriately, by the rural mail. Expect to see it in all of our finest bookstores by early next month.

Featured are 147 letters written by Glassco between 1929 and 1980 to family, friends, foes and fellow writers, including:

Rosalie Abella
Bernard Amtmann
Margaret Atwood
Alma Balster
Henry Beissel
Beatrice Bishop
Kay Boyle
Brian Brett
Glendon Brown
Marilyn Bowering
Philip Core
Malcolm Cowley
Viginia Dehn
Louis Dudek
Leon Edel
Marian Engel
Douglas Fetherling
Andrew Field
Sheila Fischman
Hugh Ford
Northrop Frye
Michel Garneau
Gary Geddes
Donna George
Paul J. Gillette
Maurice Girodias
Beatrice Glassco
Elma Glassco
Michael Gnarowski
Gérald Godin
Eldon Grier
Ralph Gustafson
Gilles Hénault
Daryl Hine
Milton Kastilo
Margaret Laurence
Irving Layton
Jean Le Moyne
Sandra Martin
Seymour Mayne
Robert McAlmon
Al Purdy
Stephen Scobie
F.R. Scott
A.J.M. Smith
F.M. Southam
Fraser Sutherland
John Sutherland
Ronald Sutherland
Julian Symons
William Toye
Gael Turnbull
Geoffrey Wagner
George Woodcock

and a transvestite from Chibougamau named Carmen.

The book also features previously unpublished photographs and verse, including "For A.J.M. Smith", written by Glassco on occasion of his friend's seventieth birthday.

My thanks go out again to Carmine Starnino and Simon Dardick, publisher of Véhicule Press, for their good work in making this book possible.

            Scraping the crumbling roadbed of this strife
            With rotting fenceposts and old mortgages
            (No way of living, but a mode of life),
            How sift from death and waste three grains of duty,
            O thoughts that start from scratch and end in a dream
            Of graveyards minding their own business?

            But the heart accepts it all, this honest air
            Lapped in green valleys where accidents will happen!

                                                     — John Glassco, "The Rural Mail"

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