Gary Snyder's second collection, Myths & Texts, was originally published in 1960 by Totem Press. It is now reissued by New Directions in this completely revised format, with an introduction by the author.
The three sequences in the book—"Logging," "Hunting," "Burning"—show the remarkable cohesiveness in Snyder's writings over the years, for we find the poet absorbed, then as now, with Buddhist and Amerindian lore and other interconnections East and West, but above all with the premedical devotion to the land and work.
About the Author
Born in 1930 in San Francisco, Gary Snyder grew up in the rural Pacific Northwest. He graduated from Reed College in 1951 with degrees in anthropology and literature, and later, 1953–56, studied Japanese and Chinese civilization at Berkeley, returning there to teach in the English Department. After participating in the San Francisco revival, the beginning of the beat poetry movement, with Ginsberg, Whalen, Rexroth and McClure, Snyder quietly went off to Japan in 1955 where he stayed for eighteen months, living in a Zen monastery. In 1958, he joined the tanker "Sappa Creek" and traveled around the world. In early 1959 he again returned to Japan where, apart from six months in India, he studied Kyoto under Oda Sesso Roshi, the Zen master and Head Abbot of Daitoku-Ji. He has spent further time (1966–67) in Japan on a Bollingen research grant. In 1969 he received a Guggenheim grant and toured the Southwestern United States visiting various Indian tribes.