In honor of National Poetry Month, let’s learn about the poet, Sara Teasdale.
Teasdale was a popular, early 20th century poet who paved the way for the success of future female poets, such as Edna St. Vincent Millay, Margaret Widdemer, and Elinor Wylie.
She wrote seven books in her lifetime, and received admiration for her lyrical poetry that centered on changing female perspectives on love, life, and death.
Teasdale was born on August 8, 1884 in a wealthy family in St. Louis, Missouri. Growing up, she was privately educated, making frequent trips to Chicago where she entered into Harriet Monroe’s Poetry magazine circle. Her first published poem appeared in the St. Louis’s weekly Reedy’s Mirror in 1907. Later that year, she published her first book, Sonnets to Duse, and Other Poems.
Featured in March 28, 1910 Perth Amboy Evening News.
Her other publications include Helen of Troy, and Other Poems (1911) and Rivers to the Sea (1915).
Teasdale married in 1914 and, in 1916, she moved with her new husband to New York City.
Her book, titled Love Songs (1917), won both the Columbia Poetry Prize (now Pulitzer) and the Poetry Society of America Prize.
Her last three collections of poetry, Flame and Shadow (1920), Dark of the Moon (1926), and Stars Tonight (1930) were considered to be her best. Many remarked on the simplicity, yet clarity of her writing, and her expression of passion and romance.
She got divorced in 1929 and, after suffering a bout of pneumonia, she died by suicide in 1933.
Her final collection Strange Victory appeared posthumously the same year.
“Look for a lovely thing and you will find it, it is not far, it never will be far.”
– Sara Teasdale
(Contributed by Kristi Chanda)
Poets.org. (2021). Academy of American Poets. Received from poets.org/poet/sara-teasdale.
“Sara Teasdale.” (2021). Poetry Foundation, Poetry Foundation. Received from www.poetryfoundation.org/poets/sara-teasdale.