Sunday, January 28, 2007

Immortal butterflies

Lew Jaffe, a collector of bookplates and a blogger, recently posted this image of an original pen and ink illustration by Vachel Lindsay.

According to Mr. Jaffe, Lindsay's obit (didn't say which newspaper) reported that the Rev. Clark Walter Cummings officiated at Lindsay's funeral. The sketch is dated 1931, the year Lindsay died.

Along either edge of the page Lindsay wrote the words, "Fine books are immortal butterflies that sweep the skies."

No indication is given as to what book this drawing was made in, but it probably wasn't a Lindsay title.

6 comments:

Lew Jaffe said...

I would like to know if Vachel Lindsay designed any other bookplates besides the one in my collection.It was one item in a larger collection purchased several years ago in Texas.
Lew Jaffe Philadelphia, Pa.
Http://bookplatejunkie.blogspot.com

Larry Stevens said...

Lindsay loved to decorate, annotate and personalize books, so I'm sure this example is not the only one. I imagine there are hundreds of such examples to be found in private and public libraries, attics, garages and used book shops all over America.

Lindsayana such as this are collected by a core of devotees. The "Immortal Butterflies" bookplate is an exiting discovery. The association with Rev. Cummings and the fact that it was done in the last year of Lindsay's life make it a very special thing.

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