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Essence was a poetry "little" edited and published by Joseph Payne Brennan (1918-1990) in New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.A.

Essence ran 47 issues from 1950 to 1977.

Among the many poets who contributed over the years were George Abbe, Duane Ackerson, Doris Philbrick Brennan, Judson Crews, August Derleth, Alan Donovan, Alfred Dorn, Janet Fox (Scavenger's Newsletter), Skip Galloway, Joseph Joel Keith, Lilith Lorraine (Challenge, Different, Flame), John Francis Murphy, Rebecca Newth, William J. Noble, Lori Petri, Dorothy Quick, Sydney King Russell, Wade Wellman (son of Manly Wade Wellman), Mary Winter, and Celeste Turner Wright.

Also included were reprints of the work of David Park Barnitz, Arthur Rimbaud, and others.

Joseph Payne Brennan also published the literary fanzine Macabre.