This is an enchanting compilation of letters written by AE or George William Russell, the mystical Irish poet, friend and contemporary of Yeats, George Moore, Padraic Colum and all the leading literary lights of the Irish renaissance. Although he was active in the rural cooperative moment and in Ireland's tumultuous political affairs from 1910 to 1925, AE was essentially a mystical poet and painter, an incorrigible idealist, and a mild, gentle man whom many would call a bit fey. These definitions in no way detract from the charm of his letters. For he wrote an impeccable English and his correspondence reflects his sincerity, imagination and the purity of his high-minded spirit. Born in Ulster, he spent his mature life in the south of Ireland and- eminently fair to the British- hoped for and predicted the union of the two parts. He could not have been more wrong. The disappointment of his political hopes impinged not at all on his spiritual convictions, deeply influenced as he was by Indian philosophical thought....This book is for a special market but it represents fine research into an important period of Irish literary history. Those interested in this period, as well as those interested in the poet and his rather esoteric point of view, will be rewarded.