On the “Mrs Thrale” bit in Frank O’Hara’s “Meditations in an Emergency.”
Frank O’Hara composed the piece that he later called “Meditations in an Emergency” on or around June 25, 1954—anyhow, that is the date on the manuscript. At that time, the title was “Meditations on Re-emergent Occasions,” which makes O’Hara’s debt to John Donne’s 1624 text Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions much more obvious.
O’Hara’s piece, retitled at the suggestion of Kenneth Koch, was published in Poetry about four months later, which is an excellent turn-around time. This was during the five years when Karl Shapiro was editor. You can have a look at the original page layout of “Meditations in an Emergency” here. Clickers who know the text will find no surprises. Read More