For immediate release

The Poetry Foundation Celebrates Emily Dickinson’s Envelope Poems

Website, magazine, gallery, library and event space to feature Dickinson-related content
October 15, 2013

CHICAGO —The Poetry Foundation celebrates the publication of The Gorgeous Nothings: Emily Dickinson's Envelope Poems (New Directions, October 2013) across its programs—in Poetry magazine, at, and in the Poetry Foundation gallery, library and event space in Chicago.

The Gorgeous Nothings: Emily Dickinson's Envelope Poems is equal parts artists’ book, portfolio and act of archival scholarship. The new trade publication features Emily Dickinson’s 52 envelope poems reproduced in full color in their original size. Editors Jen Bervin and Marta Werner supply accompanying transcription.

WEBSITE: To mark the publication of The Gorgeous Nothings, has just published an audio slideshow of Emily Dickinson’s envelope poems with voiceover commentary from the book’s editors, Jen Bervin and Marta Werner.

GALLERY: Forever— is composed of Nows— : Artworks Inspired by Emily Dickinson (Oct. 15 – Nov. 30) highlights Emily Dickinson’s influence across artistic mediums. Dickinson’s mythic reclusiveness and haunting, elliptical verse have captured the imaginations of a variety of artists since her poems first appeared in print. Forever— is composed of Nows— will showcase the work of contemporary artists inspired by Dickinson, featuring textile art by Lesley Dill, artists’ books and a quilt by Jen Bervin, and a window installation by Spencer Finch. A replica of Dickinson’s white housedress (on loan from the Emily Dickinson Museum in Amherst, Mass.) will also be on view. The Poetry Foundation library will supplement gallery offerings by making Lesley Dill’s Emily Dickinson-inspired opera, “Divided Light,” available for listening.

MAGAZINE: The November 2013 issue of Poetry will include an excerpt from The Gorgeous Nothings, including editor Jen Bervin’s introduction to the book. The magazine will be available online as of Nov. 1.

EVENT: On Nov. 14 at the Poetry Foundation, Jen Bervin and Marta Werner, the editors of The Gorgeous Nothings: Emily Dickinson’s Envelope Poems, will present text and images from their new book. Their multimedia presentation will be followed by a Q&A session.

What: The Gorgeous Nothings: Jen Bervin and Marta Werner on Emily Dickinson’s Envelope Poems
When: Thurs., Nov. 14, 7 pm
Where: Poetry Foundation, 61 W. Superior St.
Cost: This event is free and open to the public.
More info:

The Poetry Foundation’s celebration of The Gorgeous Nothings: Emily Dickinson's Envelope Poems coincides with the Drawing Center’s Dickinson/Walser exhibit in New York.


About the Poetry Foundation
The Poetry Foundation, publisher of Poetry magazine, is an independent literary organization committed to a vigorous presence for poetry in our culture. It exists to discover and celebrate the best poetry and to place it before the largest possible audience. The Poetry Foundation seeks to be a leader in shaping a receptive climate for poetry by developing new audiences, creating new avenues for delivery and encouraging new kinds of poetry through innovative literary prizes and programs. For more information, please visit

About Poetry Magazine
Founded in Chicago by Harriet Monroe in 1912, Poetry is the oldest monthly devoted to verse in the English-speaking world. Monroe’s “Open Door” policy, set forth in Volume 1 of the magazine, remains the most succinct statement of Poetry’s mission: to print the best poetry written today, in whatever style, genre or approach. The magazine established its reputation early by publishing the first important poems of T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, Marianne Moore, Wallace Stevens, H.D., William Carlos Williams, Carl Sandburg and other now-classic authors. In succeeding decades it has presented—often for the first time—works by virtually every major contemporary poet.

About the Poetry Foundation Library
The Midwest’s only library dedicated exclusively to poetry, the Poetry Foundation Library exists to promote the reading of poetry by the general public, and to support the editorial needs of all Poetry Foundation programs and staff. Visitors to the library may browse a collection of 30,000 volumes, experience audio and video recordings in private listening booths, and view exhibits of poetry-related materials. In addition to providing public access to its collections in the form of a reading room, the library creates interactive programs to inspire a wider readership for poetry in readers of all ages. The library’s collection aims to present the best poetry, in English or in translation, of the modern and contemporary era, as well as representative selections of the major poetic works of all eras. A children’s collection contains a range of titles to engage young readers.

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