Letter suggests Kilmer's 'Trees' was penned in NJ

The Associated Press, Friday, May 10, 2013, 11:58am (PDT)

MAHWAH, N.J. (AP) — A historian says New Jersey can lay claim to the trees Joyce Kilmer found lovelier than any poem.

Several towns in New England and even the University of Notre Dame have claimed to inspire the poet's greatest work, "Trees." The well-known verse 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 1929 letter by Kilmer's widow shows the poem was written in 1913 at their former home there.

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

Aline Kilmer wrote a graduate student that the poem was written at home by a window looking at the Ramapo (RAM'-ah-poh) Valley.

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