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192? 221 Figure Lew Sarett The Woodsman-Poet LEW SARETT, The Woodsman-Poet WHEN the editors of a great national magazine characterized Lew Sarett as one of the unique literary figures of America, they were endeavoring to capture a personality that challenges classification. There is only one Lew Sarett; and yet there are four Lew Saretts: I. Lew Sarett: woodsman and forest ranger, wilderness guide and naturalist, outrider of civilization and comrade of red men and white, of the robust pioneers of the American borderlands. II. Lew Sarett: the poet, the apostle of beauty, whose songs of the American Indian—his savage war-dances, his lullabies, his swinging pagan chants—and whose lyrics of nature and of the elemental human characters of the backwoods, have won for him great distinction in American literature as the foremost poet of the Indian and the American wilderness. III. Lew Sarett: A.B., LL.B., Litt.D., Professor of Argumentation and Persuasion, member of the faculty of the School of Speech of Northwestern University, whose precept and example have quickened the intellectual and spiritual life of thousands of university students. IV. Lew Sarett: the Lyceum lecturer and reader, who brought to flower, out of the rich soil of his adventurous life and his varied experiences, lectures on the wilderness of such merit that he has won a high place as one of the most distinguished artists on the American platform. Those who meet this unique national figure in person will find also a fifth Lew Sarett: a man whom rooms repress and stifle, who draws his strength and his faith from the wild earth, whose eyes look upon life steadily and wholesomely; a man who walks constantly with the companionship of a living God immanent in tree and bird and wild flower. The life of this woodsman-poet is kaleidoscopic. He came out of the forests of the Lake Superior country as a boy. In Chicago he was a newsboy, a bundle-carrier in a department store, and a worker in a sweatshop. He knew poverty, loneliness, and hunger. Later he found his way back to the North; in turn he became a life-saver, a teacher of woodcraft in sportmen's camps, a naturalist, a guide in the Canadian North, and a U. S. Ranger in the RockyMountains. After he received his education—on funds that he earned in part by his work in the woods—at the University of Michigan, Beloit College, the University of Illinois, and Harvard University, he became first an instructor at the University of Illinois, and later a professor at Northwestern University. It would require volumes instead of the few inches of space available to tell the story of his rise from obscurity to his nation-wide distinction as one of the most unique literary figures of this generation. Numerous magazines have published biographical articles in the effort to encompass the life and the work of this man who is at once a ranger, a daring woodsman, a professor, and an eminent poet; who is respected in the field of letters—a member of the Society of Midland Authors, and the Authors' Club of London, Eng., and contributing editor to various literary journals—and who is equally respected by the voyageurs and lumberjacks with whom his work as a woodsman has thrown him, and by the Indians who have adopted him and have given him the name of Lone-Caribou. Out of this colorful life grew Lew Sarett's poetry. He has contributed to the Atlantic Monthly, the Bookman, the Century, the Forum, Poetry Magazine, the North American Review, Sunset and a dozen other journals. He has won numerous prizes with his poems. He is the author of three volumes of poetry on the American wilderness: Many Many Moons,The Box of God, and Slow Smoke—a best seller in 1925–26 and winner of the prize offered by Poetry Society of America for the best volume of poetry published in 1925. These volumes are marked by such power and beauty that by the general agreement of literary critics they have established his supremacy in this field. Figure Books by Lew Sarett MANY MANY MOONS It is incalculably by far the best book of Indian poems ever published.— Boston Transcript. THE BOX OF GOD 'The Box of God' means more as an American epic than 'Hiawatha.' It is a revelation of the soul of man of deep spiritual nature. But it is more than that—to me it is one of the great tragic poems of our generation.— Harry Hansen, Literary Editor New York World, in “Midwest Portraits.” SLOW SMOKE Lew Sarett is uncovering riches well worth waiting for. … His third volume is one of the literary sensations of the year.— Chicago Daily News. PUBLISHERS, HENRY HOLT & COMPANY 1 Park Avenue New York City LEW SARETT THE POET Press Comments Literary Digest International Book Review —With his third volume, Sarett reaches the front rank of American poets. He can stop writing now, assured of a safe place in American literature. Harper's Magazine —Lew Sarett's work glows.… Despite the influence of various schools of poetry, he has taken the materials at hand in the woods and the mountains and woven them into rich lyricism.… He has rendered the legends of the Indian with tremendous success. The Lyric West —His work is as beautiful and fine and good as the world of its imagining.… The author has an omniscient understanding of deer, wild geese, little foxes, untamed broncos, birches, alders, firs, and of the lives his people live. New York Times Midweek Pictorial —Lew Sarett's poetry has won wide recognition. Arthur Guiterman—The Outlook —Mr. Sarett writes of what he knows and feels, and with full power of communication. Clement Wood—New York Post Literary Review —Lew Sarett's books hold the West as it is, in freshly seen glimpses of the unyoked outdoors, in sharp tales of the Indians and frontiersmen. More than this, it holds an unyoked West in the soul of the man. All that is high-souled and heroic in man leaps to respond to their bugle-calls. Harrict Monroc—Poctry Magazine —Lew Sarett has the character equipment to write poems expressive of the particular kind of heroic spirit which is building the future of America while nations are painfully digging their way cut of the past. New York World —Lew Sarett has written the greatest tragic poem of our generation. With Slow Smoke he reaches the front rank of American poets. Carl Sandburg—Introduction to Many Many Moons —And so Sarett … with tall timbers, fresh waters, blue ducks, and a loon in him. We have too many orderly, synthesized poets in the United States and in England. In their orien ation with the library canary, fed from delicatessen tins, they are strangers to the loon that calls off its long night cry in the tall timber up among the beginnings of the Mississippi. Sarett has equipment. Years a forest ranger and a woodsman, other years a wilderness guide, companion of red and white men as an outrider of civilization, university instructor, headline performer at Western Chautauquas, magazine writer, he brings wisdom of things garrulous and things silent to his book. Old men with strong heads and shrewd, slow tongues, young men with tough feet, the wishing song of mate for mate—they are here. The loam and the lingo, the sand and the syllables of North America are here. New York Herald Tribune —During many moons spent in the vanishing wild places of this continent, Mr. Sarett found the enthusiasm which unlocked for him the gift of utterance and marked out his field in American literature. This feld is definitely his. He possesses it and he is possessed by it. He made the wilderness his emotional property, as he made the Indians his own people. Their inarticulate beliefs and yearnings are his poetry. Poetry Society of America Bulletin —The Committee declared that it voted Slow Smoke the P. S. A. prize for the best volume of poetry published in 1925 because of the high and even excellence of its lyric and narrative poetry, its intimacy with earth, its singing quality, its tenderness, its limpid beauty, and its outstanding significance. LEW SARETT SLOW SMOKE is more than a lecture: it is a beautiful experience. On the theory that a lecture should be in a sense the flowering of a man's life, his experience, his philosophy, Lew Sarett formulated his lectures. Out of the uncommonly rich soil of his life he drew SLOW SMOKE, a lecture on the Indian and American wild life, supplemented by reading from his books. He brings to the platform not only his creative talent, skill in the use of vivid English, originality, freshness of material, and a stimulating outlook on life, but also skill as an orator, unusual dramatic power, a sense of humor, and personal charm. As a consequence, his lectures are so unique that, like the man himself, they defy classification. COMMENTS: Batavia, N. Y.—Back after four years, he proceeded to give of his best and that was some of the finest work ever done on the lecture platform—certainly it has never been surpassed in Batavia.… Too much praise cannot be given Mr. Sarett. His is undoubtedly one of the outstanding lectures given today, not only his description and poetry, but the thoughts and ideals that underlie all of his utterances. Genesco, N. Y.—(Normal Lamron)—Lew Sarett held our attention for one hour and forty minutes without apparent effort. The completeness with which he was received by the audience was made evident by the fact that at the end of the program no one rose to leave the hall. Mr. Sarett presented a colorful picture, portraying the vivid, vibrant personality whose restless, high-tension temperament must be an integral part of an imaginative and idealistic poet. Mr. Sarett spoke rapidly, forcefully and convincingly. Every detail of the program had been so planned that swiftly and quietly he seemed to build before us a noble structure that could not fall down like the house of cards in 'Alice in Wonderland.' Indeed the image of that evening is so deeply imprinted upon our minds that we shall for some time be able to feel the same delicious sensations which we experienced through our brief sojourn on the heights. We wonder if Lew Sarett and Disraeli have not something in common when we read that famous line 'Life is too short to be little.' Johnstown, N. Y.—(Burroughs Club)—Fairly breathing the appeal of the great out of doors, Lew Sarett, appearing in the High School Auditorium last evening, took his audience of three hundred or more into the very depths of nature, and entertained it in a unique and fascinating manner and dispensed a wealth of education. Elmira, N. Y.—The freshness, the wholesomeness and the worthwhileness of Lew Sarett's message, brought out by his background and training, his rich experience and his unusual ability in speech, long will be remembered.
|Title||Lew Sarett: the woodsman - poet|
|Topical Subject (LCSH)||
|Personal Name Subject||Sarett, Lew|
|Digital Collection||Traveling Culture: Circuit Chautauqua in the Twentieth Century|
|Contributing Institution||University of Iowa. Libraries. Special Collections Dept.|
|Archival Collection||Redpath Chautauqua Collection|
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|Contact Information||Contact the Special Collections Dept. at The University of Iowa Libraries: http://www.lib.uiowa.edu/spec-coll/contact/index/|
|Number of Pages||5|
|Digitization Specifications||Scanned at 600 dpi, 32-bit color. Master image available in tiff format.|