An old friend, Jim Cleary, working on the monumental Bibliography of Australian Literature at the University of Queensland, recently rang to tell me about the elusive modernist poet Anna Wickham. ‘Wickham’ is the pen-name of Edith Alice Mary Harper, ‘one of the most significant feminist poets of modernism’, who published between the 1910s and the 1930s. The author of over one thousand poems, covering a remarkable diversity of forms, Wickham was described in the memoir of American publisher Louis Untermeyer as ‘a remarkable gypsy of a woman’. During her tempestuous life, she mixed with members of the London Chelsea and Bloomsbury sets, plunged into the literary and artistic circles of the Parisian demi-monde, had a brief sexual relationship with pioneer American modernist poet H.D. (Hilda Dolittle), was sexually spurned by lesbian heiress and literary patron Natalie Clifford Barney, and became closely aligned with D.H. Lawrence and his wife Frieda von Richthofen, as well as Dylan Thomas and Caitlin MacNamara, falling out with the latter couple after throwing a drunken ‘Thomas and fellow writer Lawrence Durrell out of the house’. She was also close friends with the erratic novelist Malcolm Lowry, whetted the appetites of Henry Miller and Anaïs Nin, and helped to mentor the young Stephen Spender. Somewhat like T.S. Eliot's wife Vivien Haigh-Wood, she was incarcerated at one point in a mental institution by her husband, solicitor Patrick Hepburn, And, like Sylvia Plath and Anne Sexton. she died by her own hand, hanging herself in her decaying home on Parliament Hill, London, following the freezing winter of 1947.