Displays for the first time the complete work of a neglected poetic genius
Although best known as C. S. Lewis's wife, Joy Davidman was a gifted writer herself who produced, among other things, two novels and an award-winning volume of poetry in her short lifetime.
The first comprehensive collection of Davidman's poetry, A Naked Tree includes the poems that originally appeared in her Letter to a Comrade (1938), forty other published poems, and more than two hundred previously unpublished poems that came to light in a remarkable 2010 discovery.
Of special interest is Davidman's sequence of forty-five love sonnets to C. S. Lewis, which offer stunning evidence of her spiritual struggles with regard to her feelings for Lewis, her sense of God's working in her lonely life, and her mounting frustration with Lewis for keeping her at arm's length emotionally and physically.
Readers of these Davidman poems -- arranged chronologically by Don King -- will discover three recurring, overarching themes: God, death, and immortality; politics, including capitalism and communism; and (the most by far) romantic, erotic love. This volume marks Joy Davidman as a figure to be reckoned with in the landscape of twentieth-century American poetry.