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[Manuscript Poem] Untitled [but with “The Neighbor's Children” written in pencil on the verso]

  1. 00018540_0001
  2. 00018540_0002

Mary Webb. Untitled manuscript poem [but with “The Neighbour’s Children” written in pencil on the verso], one leaf, 8½″ x 6¾″, on off-white ruled wove paper. Twenty-seven lines, black ink, signed at an angle at the bottom: “Mary Webb.” This emotional poem expresses the grief of a childless woman for her un-conceived infant. Mary Webb desperately longed for a child of her own. Her feelings about maternity are clearly reflected in Seven for a Secret (1923): “For a woman’s greatest career is love—spiritual and physical and the two are one and the crown of her career is a child. And whatever else she may be, and obtain, and create, she will, if she misses these, die with the knowledge of defeat. . . . A woman who has not supremely given herself is not supremely herself. Her work is halt and blind. She has not lost her life; so she has not found it.”