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Was Joyce Kilmer’s ‘Trees’ Penned in NJ?

A local historian believes he’s found proof that writer Joyce Kilmer wrote his poem “Trees” in New Jersey.

Trees
Flickr User Ralph Daily

Several towns in New England and even the University of Notre Dame have laid claim to inspiring the verse, which begins, “I think that I shall never see a poem lovely as a tree.”

Alex Michelini of the Joyce Kilmer Society of Mahwah says a letter written in 1929 by Kilmer’s widow shows the poem was written in 1913 at their former home in Mahwah.

He found the letter and a notebook containing the first two lines of the poem at Georgetown University’s Lauinger Library in Washington.

Aline Kilmer wrote a graduate student that the poem was written at home by a window looking at the Ramapo Valley.

 

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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