01 August 2009

Chevreau and The Rabbit Catcher

In November 2008, I posted about the collection of Sylvia Plath typescripts (link to library's finding aid) held at the Sydney Jones Library at the University of Liverpool. The typescript for "The Rabbit Catcher" is particularly interesting as written adjacent to the first line - in Plath's hand - is the world Chevreau.

Recently I learned that this is likely not referring to a young goat. Rather, it is referring to a person, Cecile Chevreau. I wonder if she kept young goats?

Cecile Chevreau, along with Gary Watson and Alan Wheatley, read poems for the BBC Third Programme 'New Poems' broadcast on 16 September 1962 (at 18.40, or 6:40 p.m.). Other poets included in the broadcast were Zulfikar Ghose (a reviewer Plath's The Colossus), John Lehmann (an editor at London Magazine), Christopher Hampton, Jenny Joseph, John Knight, Michell Raper, Anthony Thwaite (amongst other things, a producer for BBC radio), and Terence Tiller. The poems by Plath included in this program were "The Moon and the Yew Tree" and "The Rabbit Catcher".

You can read more about Plath, archives, her recordings and the BBC in "These Ghostly Archives", a paper co-written by Gail Crowther and myself to be published in Plath Profiles 2 later this month August. Oh, and if you're interested, you can see a detail of the cover art by Kristina Zimbakova here. But, that's all you're getting until the issue is ready in a week or so...


Melanie Smith said...

Very much looking forward to Volume 2 Peter. Thank you for the article will get to it on the weekend when Mr 2 and a half is asleep and growing number 2 isn't making me feel unwell.

Rehan Qayoom said...

I better get through Plath profiles 1 quickly!

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