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George Garrett


George Garrett is one of the six writers on this site that I have actually seen in the flesh. I just happened to see him when I was in the University of Virginia bookstore at Charlottesville, where he happens to teach. I went to buy some of his books for him to sign – they only had his Elizabethan trilogy in stock – but, by the time I had found them, he had disappeared. He is one of the foremost American writers yet, I suspect because he is a southerner in a country where, till recently, literary discourse and publication have been dominated by Yankees, he has not received the recognition he deserves. The fact that his books – apart from his historical novels – are not easily classifiable, does not help.

He was born in 1929 in Orlando. His father was a lawyer. He attended Sewanee Military Academy and then went to Columbia and Princeton before serving in the army. After the army he took an M.A. and then a Ph. D. He has taught at various universities, most recently at the University of Virginia. Though he has written both poems and plays, he is best known for his short stories and novels, particularly his Elizabethan trilogy. He died in 2008.

Other links

George Garrett
George Garrett
George (Palmer Garrett Jr.) Biography
George Garrett: An Appreciation
Farewell, George Garrett
Inventory of the George P. Garrett Papers, 1929-2006
Three Poems by George Garrett


1957 The Reverend Ghost (poetry)
1958 King of the Mountain (stories)
1958 The Sleeping Gypsy and Other Poems (poetry)
1959 The Finished Man (novel)
1961 Abraham’s Knife and Other Poems (poetry)
1961 In the Briar Patch (stories)
1961 Which Ones Are the Enemy? (novel)
1962 Sir Slob and the Princess: A Play for Children (drama)
1964 Cold Ground Was My Bed Last Night (stories)
1965 Do, Lord, Remember Me (novel)
1967 For a Bitter Season: New and Selected Poems (poetry)
1969 A Wreath for Garibaldi and Other Stories (stories)
1971 Death of the Fox (novel)
1973 The Magic Striptease (stories)
1978 Welcome to the Medicine Show: Flashcards/Postcards/Snapshots (poetry)
1979 To Recollect a Cloud of Ghosts: Christmas in England 1602-1603 (stories)
1981 Luck’s Shining Child: A Miscellany of Poems & Verses (poetry)
1981 Enchanted Ground: A Play for Readers’ Theater
1983 The Succession (novel)
1984 The Collected Poems of George Garrett (poetry)
1984 James Jones (biography)
1985 An Evening Performance: New and Selected Short Stories (stories)
1986 Poison Pen; or, Live Now and Pay Later (novel)
1988 Understanding Mary Lee Settle (criticism)
1990 Entered from the Sun (novel)
1992 The Sorrows of Fat City: A Selection of Literary Essays and Reviews
1992 Whistling in the Dark: True Stories and Other Fables
1992 My Silk Purse and Yours: The Publishing Scene and American Literary Art
1994 The Old Army Game: A Novel and Stories (novel/stories)
1996 The King of Babylon Shall Not Come Against You (novel)
1998 Days of Our Lives Lie in Fragments: New and Old Poems, 1957-1997 (poetry)
1998 Bad Man Blues: A Portable George Garrett
2002 Going to See the Elephant: Pieces of a Writing Life
2003 Southern Excursions: Views on Southern Letters in My Time
2004 Double Vision (novel)
2006 Empty Bed Blues (stories)