December 1994

Little Sparta: Wild Hawthorn Press, 1995
12.5 x 13cm, 48pp plus flower pattern boards and tipped on book title label. Artist's book with ten woodcuts by Gary Hincks of flowers opposite epigrams by Finlay such as

4. A wild flower is a garden flower permeated by morality and poetry."

One of only 250 such books prints as Christmas gifts. VG+


Little: Sparta: Wild Hawthorn Press, Xmas 1994
6.7 x 13cm, 4pp card with 6.7 x 13cm, 1pp insert.
The card is a typical evolving visual poem by Finlay:

the October-coloured sails of old Thames barges
the water-filled footprints of old Thames barges
the cold Christmas stables of old Thames barges
the Georgian pastorals of old Thames barges

The fourth line is printed in festive red.
The insert explains the imagery: the October-coloured sails are caused by the linseed oil on the sails hinting at Autumn colours, the water-filled footprints comes from a quote from a book on old barges where abandoned boats are left in mud in creeks to rot, the festive line recalls the "long, low holds with their tie beams and ceilings" which Finlay clearly sees as a suitable site for a manger, and the Georgian pastorals reflects the hay and straw that many of the boats carried - turning them into miniature moving countrysides.
This example is signed " Happy Christmas from Ian" in pencil on the back and also has the original envlope which is addressed in pencil (again by Finlay) to Edward and Jan. VG+.