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To a Dreamer:
Best Poems of H. P. Lovecraft

By H.P. Lovecraft
Edited by S. T. Joshi

Dustjacket text

H. P. Lovecraft’s mother once said that her son was “a poet of the highest order.” That may be something of an exaggeration, but there is no question that much of his poetic work forms an important adjunct to his highly acclaimed fiction. In particular, his weird verse—the 36 sonnets of Fungi from Yuggoth, the long poems “The Poe-et’s Nightmare” and “Psychopompos,” and shorter poems such as “Nemesis” and “To a Dreamer”—has been hugely influential both in his own day and in the decades that followed.

This volume—the first major selection of Lovecraft’s entire poetic output since the long out-of-print Collected Poems (1963)—provides a cross-section of the very best of Lovecraft’s poetry. While his weird poems take pride of place, other bodies of work are not neglected. In particular, Lovecraft was skilled at satirical poetry, inspired by the pungent work of John Dryden and Alexander Pope. He condemned contemporary poetry in “Amissa Minerva” and also wrote an exquisite parody of T. S. Eliot’s Waste Land, titled “Waste Paper.” He even satirized himself in “The Dead Bookworm” and other verses.

Much of Lovecraft’s poetic output was “occasional verse”—poems written for a specific occasion or incident. Virtually any event—from the birth of a friend’s child (“To an Infant”) to the death of a beloved cat (“Sir Thomas Tryout”)—could trigger a striking bit of poetry. Lovecraft also found political events, the change of seasons, and affairs in the amateur journalism movement a rich source of poetic inspiration.

The volume has been assembled by S. T. Joshi, a leading Lovecraft scholar and editor of Lovecraft’s complete fiction, poetry, essays, and letters.


Introduction by S. T. Joshi
I. Fantasy and Horror II. Occasional Verse
  • Regner Lodbrog’s Epicedium
  • To Charlie of the Comics
  • The Bookstall
  • Inspiration
  • Respite
  • Brotherhood
  • Fact and Fancy
  • Laeta; a Lament
  • To Mr. Kleiner, on Receiving from Him the Poetical Works of Addison, Gay, and Somerville
  • A Pastoral Tragedy of Appleton, Wisconsin
  • Hellas
  • Tryout’s Lament for the Vanished Spider
  • Cindy: Scrub-Lady in a State Street Skyscraper
  • On a Grecian Colonnade in a Park
  • Sir Thomas Tryout
  • To Endymion
  • Damon and Lycë
  • My Favourite Character
  • A Year Off
  • To an Infant
  • In Memoriam: Oscar Incoul Verelst of Manhattan
  • Hedone
  • To a Sophisticated Young Gentleman
  • To a Young Poet in Dunedin
  • Gaudeamus
III. Satire
  • Providence in 2000 A.D.
  • Ad Criticos
  • Gryphus in Asinum Mutatus
  • The Power of Wine: A Satire
  • The Simple Speller’s Tale
  • The Isaacsonio-Mortoniad
  • The Magazine Poet
  • My Lost Love
  • The Dead Bookworm
  • On the Death of a Rhyming Critic
  • To the Incomparable Clorinda
  • Amissa Minerva
  • On Religion
  • The Pathetick History of Sir Wilful Wildrake
  • Medusa: A Portrait
  • Plaster-All
  • Waste Paper
  • Lines upon the Magnates of the Pulp
IV. Seasonal and Topographical
  • New England
  • Brumalia
  • A Garden
  • Sunset
  • Old Christmas
  • A Winter Wish
  • Providence
  • October
  • The East India Brick Row
  • Saturnalia
  • [Christmas Greetings]
V. Amateur Affairs
  • To the Members of the United Amateur Press Association from the Providence Amateur Press Club
  • Providence Amateur Press Club (Deceased) to the Athenaeum Club of Journalism
  • Greetings
    • To Arthur Goodenough, Esq.
    • To W. Paul Cook, Esq.
    • To E. Sherman Cole
    • To the Silver Clarion
  • In Memoriam: J. E. T. D.
  • Helene Hoffman Cole: 1893—1919
  • Theobaldian Aestivation
  • The Feast
VI. Politics and Society VII. Personal
  • [The Solace of Georgian Poetry]
  • Sonnet on Myself
  • Phaeton
  • Monos: An Ode
  • Edith Miniter
  • [Little Sam Perkins]
Index of Titles
Index of First Lines

Bibliographic Information

To a Dreamer: Best Poems of H. P. Lovecraft. By H.P. Lovecraft, edited by S. T. Joshi. West Warwick, RI: Necronomicon Press; 2019; ISBN-13 978-0-940884-95-3 (hardcover) and 978-0-940884-94-6 (trade paperback); 228 pages.

Purchasing This Book

This book may be purchased in trade paperback from Amazon.com or Barnes & Noble or directly from the publisher, Necronomicon Press.

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