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The Biplane Houses

Les Murray

The Biplane Houses by Les Murray
RRP: GBP£ 8.95
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ISBN: 978 1 857548 93 8
Categories: Australian, Catholic
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Published: September 2006
216 x 135 x 5 mm
80 pages
Publisher: Carcanet Press
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  • Having tacked loose tin panels
    of the car shed together
    Peter the carpenter walks straight up
    the ladder, no hands,
    and buttons down lapels of the roof.
    from 'The Shining Slopes and Planes'
    In his first new volume of poems since Poems the Size of Photographs (2002), Les Murray celebrates the grace and variousness of the world with an unfailing abundance of imagination and linguistic energy. Here is a poet writing at the height of his powers, capturing the richness of life in story-poems, word-plays, history- and myth-makings, aphoristic fragments and domestic portraits, recollections of rural Australia and moments of urban experience. Houses - as home, landscape and metaphor - form a many-sided theme of the book, and as ever Murray's evocation of the natural world is unparalleled in its inventiveness.

    'A poet of fantastic power and range... All human life is bound within Murray's poetry.' - The Observer

    'Les Murray is one of the finest poets in whom the English language is now at work.' - Times Literary Supplement


    The Averted
    Early Summer Hail with Rhymes in O
    Post Mortem
    The Hanging Gardens
    Leaf Brims
    The Statistics of Good
    Twelve Poems
    Too Often Round the Galleries
    Travelling the British Roads
    The Test
    The Kitchen Grammars
    Winter Winds
    The Tune on Your Mind
    The Domain of the Octopus
    A Dialect History of Australia
    For an Eightieth Birthday
    On the Central Coast Line
    Melbourne Pavement Coffee
    Photographing Aspiration
    Black Belt in Marital Arts
    The Welter
    A Levitation of Land
    Through the Lattice Door
    On the North Coast Line
    The Nostril Songs
    For a Convert in Boston
    The Newcastle Rounds
    The House Left in English
    Upright Clear Across
    Ghost Story
    The Shining Slopes and Planes
    The Succession
    A Stampede of the Sacrifice
    The Offshore Island
    An Acrophobe’s Dragon
    As Night-Dwelling Winter Approaches
    The Hoaxist
    Barker Unchained
    The Cool Green
    Death from Exposure
    Me and Je Reviens
    Pastoral Sketches
    Japanese Sword Blades in the British Museum
    The Mare out on the Road
    The Blueprint
    Blueprint II
    Norfolk Island
    Ends of the Earth
    The Sick-Bags
    Lateral Dimensions
    Bright Lights on Earth
    Panic Attack
    Recognising the Derision as Fear
    Gentrifical Force
    The Physical Diaspora of William Wallace
    The Brick Funnel
    Sunday on a Country River
    Ripe in the Arbours of the Nose
    The Weatherproof Jungle Tree
    Jet Propulsion Stereo
    Industrial Relations
    Les Murray was born in 1938 and grew up on a dairy farm at Bunyah on the north coast of New South Wales, where he still lives. He studied at Sydney University and later worked as a translator at the Australian National University and as an officer in the Prime Minister's ... read more
    Awards won by Les Murray Long-listed, 1994 for the Oxford Chair of Poetry. Winner, 1996 T.S. Eliot Prize for the best collection. (Subhuman Redneck Poems) Winner, 1999 Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry.
    Praise for Les Murray 'Waiting for the Past is a brilliant collection by a brilliant poet.' - Anthony Domestico, Commonweal Magazine   Les Murray's Taller When Prone shows a poetic master nimbly and lyrically at work. Now seventy-two, Murray writes with the bigness of soul of a person twice his age. This collection adds another chuckie to the cairn of a remarkable personal achievement. A Nobel Prize for that man, please. - Robert Crawford, TLS Books Of The Year 2010 'Richly prolific, profoundly plebeian, full of wit, learning and dexterity, Australia's greatest living poet'  Boyd Tonkin 'It would be as myopic to regard Mr Murray as an Australian poet as to call Yeats an Irishman. He is, quite simply, the one by whom the language lives.' Joseph Brodsky. 'There is no poetry in the English language now so rooted in its sacredness, so broad-leafed in its pleasures, and yet so intimate and conversational.' Derek Walcott, The New Republic '...the true spokesman of the whole nation, the custodian of its soul... the most accomplished poet in Australia today, and among the half dozen most successful poets in the English language...' Peter Porter 'perhaps the most naturally gifted poet of his generation' David Malouf 'It should hardly need saying that merely to mention Les Murray is to heighten the tone of the discourse.' Clive James, TLS '...a waterfall of a poet, satisfying as a draught of Coonawarra Cabernet -- a year's discovery.' Martin Dodsworth, Guardian 'Les Murray is writing poetry with a lyric grandeur and verbal resourcefulness that are reassuring.' Mark Strand 'Les Murray is a major Australian poet of our time, full stop.' Douglas Dunn 'It is wonderfully disciplined writing, offering what poetry and nothing else can offer, an art that arrests one's otherwise ever frustrated sense of the richness of the life that lives only for the moment.' C.K.Stead, London Review of Books 'Critics speak of him as one of the finest poets writing in English today, one of the superleague which includes Seamus Heaney, Derek Walcott and Joseph Brodsky.' Blake Morrison, Independent on Sunday
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