ABSE, DANNIE (b. 1923, Welsh poet)
AUTOGRAPH DRAFT OF HIS POEM 'DOWN THE M4', c. 35 lines, in four-line stanzas, with autograph revisions, deletions and corrections preserving reconsidered readings, partly written at different angles on the page, 2 pages, folio, not dated
'One dutiful son going back to Cardiff I'm rather afraid
to hear my mother's news. Too often now her friends
and my aunts and uncles too go into the hole one by one
The beautiful face of my mother is in its 9th decade...'
This poem has an added poignancy because it was on the M4 that Dannie's wife Joan was killed in a car crash in 2004. It was published in Welsh Retrospective, 1997. Only one poetical manuscript by Dannie Abse has been sold at auction in the last forty years at least, in 1983. Also see lot 331.