- Prokosch, Frederic
Voices: A Memoir
Farrar, Straus and Giroux, New York, 1983, Paper-covered Boards, , First Edition, First Printing, ISBN 374-28509-8 , Fine /Near Fine
343 pp. A tiny 1/8'' tear and a bump to dj. 'Frederic Prokosch has written an uunusual and lyrical memoir of his life as novelist, poet, lepidopterist, squash racquets champion, wartime OWI agent, printer of private editions, world traveler. and--unexpectedly--inspired listener. The story starts with his childhood in Wisconsin and ends at his present country house in southern France. Voices, A Memoir is among other things a record of people talking. The talkers--some of the best of this century--are colorful, individual, sometimes eccentric, and always marvelous. This book is also a portrait of the artist who prompted, and was in part shaped by, these dialogues. In his childhood Prokosch heard and remembered the voices of Anna Pavlova, and of Thomas Mann, a friend of his father, Dr. Eduard Prokosch, noted professor of linguistics. During his youth in Paris the author exchanged words with Gertrude Stein and James Joyce; during his college days he spoke with Bill Tilden, Thomas Wolfe, Robert Frost, Wallace Stevens, Elinor Wylie, and Edna Millay; at King's College, Cambridge, he met A. E. Housman, Walter de la Mare, E. M. Forster, F. R. Leavis, and Guy Burgess; in London he met T. S. Eliot, Somerset Maugham, and Virginia Woolf. In Italy he encountered Ezra Pound, Mario Praz, George Santayana, Alberto Moravia, Bernard Berenson, Giorgio de Chirico, and Peggy Guggenheim; and in America, Thornton Wilder, W. H. Auden, Lady Cunard, Thomas Beecham, the Sitwells, Hannah Arendt, Isak Dinesen, Marianne Moore, and Vladimir Nabokov.'