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an admirable concern to keep lines open to writing in Ireland, Scotland, Wales and America.
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Edited by John Clegg
RRP: GBP 7.99
ISBN: 978 1 784106 48 5
Categories: 20th Century, 21st Century, British
Imprint: Carcanet Classics
Published: September 2018
128 pages (print version)
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Also available in: Paperback, eBook (Kindle)
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C.H. Sisson called John Heath-Stubbs ‘a Johnsonian presence with a Miltonic disability’ – a reference to the poet’s blindness. This selection of an abundant poet restores him to a new readership with the work on which his popularity was based. His ground-breaking early poetry is given its due, especially the major long poem Wounded Thammuz, printed here in its entirety. Heath-Stubbs was at the centre of the New Romantic school. The Second World War left him as almost the sole representative of one stream of English poetry. He remains crucial to the 1940s and ’50s, and was a popular presence into the 1980s, composing his later poems in his head and reciting from memory. Too long he has been sidelined by shifts of critical fashion. Selected Poems includes a critical preface by John Clegg who essentialises and celebrates the work. Three of Heath-Stubbs’ translations of Leopardi – revered by subsequent translators, and long out of print – are included.
Awards won by John Clegg Short-listed, 2017 Ledbury Forte Poetry Prize
'It's a reflection of Heath-Stubbs's creative generousity that he writes warmly about apparently trivial things, sometimes in a way that explores or hints at the momentous implications behind them'
Edmund Prestwich, The North
Praise for John Heath-Stubbs 'His range of subject matter is panoramic, and his control of emotion and intention the best of his generation.'
Poetry Review 'In his poetry, the literature of the past is an important inspiration, as are the images that inhabit it.'
'His poetry is formidable, amiable, hugely intelligent and sacramental.'
Times Literary Supplement. Praise for John Clegg 'Shaking off the dust of Cambridge, John Clegg spoors Bloomsbury, and then - Holy Toledo! - enters some western from another planet. Whatever horse he rides he makes it go, a lasso his modus operandi for capturing images.'
Marius Kociejowski 'No poet writing today matches John Clegg for wit and rigour. Holy Toledo! opens up a brilliant, uncanny frontier between the American West and the England of Empson, Davie and Woolf. Questioning language, rejoicing in it, Clegg's poetry plunges headfirst into the Great Tradition and comes out swinging.'
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