Pulitzer Prize winner Edna St. Vincent Millay (1892-1950) was a poet and playwright. Millay biographer Daniel Mark Epstein is a poet and dramatist, the author of books about Abraham Lincoln, Walt Whitman, and Bob Dylan, and a recipient of awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Holly Peppe, literary executor for Edna St. Vincent Millay, has written and lectured about the poet's life and work since the early 1980's, when she lived in Millay's home at Steepletop with the poet's younger sister Norma. Dr. Peppe's essays about Millay appear in the Penguin Classics, Harper Perennial, and Yale University Press editions of her poetry.
Rapture and Melancholy: The Diaries of Edna St. Vincent Millay, edited by Millay biographer Daniel Mark Epstein, provides an occasion to revisit not just her improbable life but also her sometimes revelatory work. . . . While the diary entries vary widely in interest level, Epstein's biographical summations are reliably fascinating and informative. . . . Hopefully the release of this complex woman's diaries will draw readers' attention to the complexity of her work, which offers much more than figs and ferries. -Abigail Deutsch, Wall Street Journal A book of surprising revelations and careful silences, these diaries constitute a remarkable portrait not only of a woman, an artist, and a citizen, but of the cultural life of her time. - David Bergman, author of The Poetry of Disturbance An essential work for the study of Millay, Daniel Mark Epstein's brilliant edition of her diaries takes us with great knowledge and insight behind the scenes of her remarkably poetic, complex life. -Jonathan Cohen, author of Muna Lee: A Pan-American Life Endlessly intriguing and illuminating. The publication of Edna St. Vincent Millay's diaries is a major literary event, providing astonishing insight into the great poet's art and life. -Chloe Honum, author of The Tulip-Flame From her 'tired and crushed and driven' girlhood through days of gardening in the nude, Millay kept diaries that illuminate a gifted poet's life and are a pleasure to read. Millay's prejudices emerge as nakedly as the gardener herself, and the late entries about addiction are devastating. I'm still grateful for this book. It was hard for an ambitious woman to survive her own daring. We need to remember it. -Lesley Wheeler, author of Poetry's Possible Worlds