Narthex & Other Stories by H.D.


Narthex & Other Stories by H.D.


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Department of Reissue No. 8
Fiction | Short Fiction
October 2011
5.25×8 inches
130 pages
ISBN 9781897388969



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Primarily known as a poet, H.D. was also a prolific prose writer. In fact her writing career began with the publication of children’s stories in Sunday school magazines. She wrote several novels, only two of which were published in her lifetime, and a number of short stories and novellas, some of which were published under pseudonyms. Two of the three stories reprinted here for the first time were published in the 1920s under the names Rhoda Peters and D.A. Hill in Pagany and Life and Letters Today. The third story—really a novella—was published in Alfred Kreymborg’s anthology, The Second American Caravan in 1928, and has been unavailable ever since. These stories offer a remarkable insight into H.D.’s thinking as she struggled to develop her work at a transitional time in her life.

Edited with an afterword by Michael Boughn

Praise for Narthex & Other Stories

“This is H.D. at her best, speaking, making real for us the range of feeling of those possibilities at the edge of our known and defined experience which have not been spoken before. It is what I have called to myself the ‘courage of the tenuous’—the quality in her which has most value for me as an artist, especially as a woman artist; the willingness to speak of what cannot be proved. What cannot, even, to be pointed to in the consensus world we precariously share with each other.” —Diane Di Prima


H.D. (Hilda Doolittle) was a writer who is most famous for her Imagist poems, though her oeuvre extends far beyond this work. Living a life filled with close friends and stricken with relationship difficulties, Doolittle poured her personal stories into her many memoirs, novels, and verse and became a central figure of the Modernism. She was born in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania on September 10, 1886, and stayed in the state until she left Bryn Mawr College in 1911. After leaving the United States, H.D. spent the rest of her life writing, which ended on September 21, 1961, in Europe.

Michael Boughn has taught literature courses at the University of Toronto for 19 years. His own writing includes poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and essays. He is the author of H.D.: A Bibliography 1905–1990 (1993) and co-editor (with Victor Coleman) of Robert Duncan’s The H.D. Book (2011). His recent book of poetry, Cosmographia: A Post-Lucretian Faux Micro-Epic, was shortlisted for the 2011 Governor General’s Award for Poetry. His mystery novel, Business As Usual, was published in 2011. Great Canadian Poems for the Aged Vol.1 Illus. Ed is forthcoming from BookThug in 2012.


Additional information

Weight .15 kg
Dimensions 5.25 × .5 × 8 in