ESENIN, SERGEI ALEKSANDROVICH. 1895-1925.
Preobrazhenie. [Transformation]. Moscow: Imazhinisty, 1921.
8vo. 47 pp. Original green wrappers. Wrappers reglued, some soiling and corners of pages chipped.
Provenance: inscribed to Egor Egorevich Nechaev, 1920.
RARE INSCRIBED COPY by the great Russian peasant poet. This revised edition of a book first published in 1918 was postdated 1921 on the front wrapper. Esenin lived his life like a rock star. This famous "poet of the people" read his work to the Czarina and her daughters and made Gorky weep when he heard it. He is probably best known in the West for having been one of Isadora Duncan's husbands. He joined the Bolshevik Revolution and was quickly disillusioned with it. The moody poet grew so depressed in the New Russia that he slashed his wrists, wrote his last poem in his own blood and then hanged himself. Vladimir Mayakovsky denounced him as a coward and he was not fully "rehabilitated" by the Soviet State until the 1960s.