James Baldwin (1924-1987) was one of America’s foremost writers and is the author of many novels and essay collections, including Notes of a Native Son.
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All of the published poetry of James Baldwin, including six significant poems previously only available in a limited edition
During his lifetime, James Baldwin authored seven novels, as well as several plays and essay collections, many of which were published to widespread praise. Baldwin’s novels and essays brought him respect as a public intellectual and admiration as a writer. However, Baldwin’s earliest writing was in poetic form, and some argue that even Baldwin considered himself a poet first and foremost. One can see this inclination in the poetic rhythms of his prose. Nonetheless, his single book of poetry, Jimmy’s Blues, published only a few short years before his death in 1987, never attracted as much of the spotlight as his novels and nonfiction did and has been unavailable for many years.
This new collection celebrates Baldwin the poet. Including the nineteen poems from Jimmy’s Blues, the collection also features his poems from a limited-edition art book called Gypsy, of which only 325 copies were ever printed. Known for his relentless honesty and startlingly prophetic insights on issues of race, class, poverty, and sexual orientation, Baldwin is just as enlightening and bold in his poetry as in his famous novels and essays.