Raining Words: Poetry and Writings by Rikki Stapleton

Raining Words is a collection of selected writings from the 1960s until 2004, and like its author, this collection is an eclectic personal anthology of poems, essays, letters and jottings—observations of life and people she knew who challenged and moved her, letters, sometimes intimate, and other writings that her mother chose to collect and publish posthumously. Rikki’s mother, Eloise Edwards, knew that this book must be published and worked tirelessly to gather together the scattered portfolio of Rikki’s work. Mother and daughter were close and traveled frequently in Europe and the US. Always with her cell phone and camera, Rikki was as passionate about travel as she was about books, language, the fine arts, politics, animals and the people around her.

About the Author

Rikki Stapleton was born and spent her youth in Richmond, Virginia. As a child, she loved being read to and developed a life-long passion for books and learning. She was a poet of language and of life and shared her passion for words and life with all those she knew. Her friends knew her as the romantic, the traveler, the writer and book lover, and as a charitable, Southern girl who loved New York.

After graduating from St. Gertrude’s High School in Richmond, she moved to New York City to attend New York University and work at Random House under Bennett Cerf, its editor. From there she moved on to the New York Times, where she stayed for ten years, continuing her writing and her study at NYU. While in the city, she was a manager at Logo’s Bookstore on York Avenue and worked at the Barnes & Noble in mid-town Manhattan in the reference department, where she selected books at the request of many artists and writers who were often in the store—including Mick Jagger, Whoopie Goldberg, Silvester Stallone, and Alec Baldwin. Her love for writing and books never ceased. She was proud of her English, Welch, and Southern roots, and admired Southern writers with a passion. She was an honorary member of the Edgar Allen Poe Foundation. During her life, she amassed an enormous book and film collection, the largest portion of which has been donated in her memory to the New York Times library.

On July 4, 2003, Rikki fell asleep while reading her newspaper and watching television in her New York apartment and suffered a fatal aneurism. She was 58.

Those her knew her were touched by her expansive personality, keen sense of humor, great compassion and empathetic, forgiving nature. This book is a testament to her love of books and her passion for life.