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Collected Poems

Christopher Middleton

Collected Poems by Christopher Middleton
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This title is available for academic inspection (paperback only).
Paperback
ISBN: 978 1 857549 80 5
Categories: 20th Century, 21st Century
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Published: June 2008
216 x 135 x 8 mm
Publisher: Carcanet Press
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  • Suddenly there's such a crowd, I can't see
         Over their heads, let alone into them.
    I am struck by their muteness, their misty
        Dissolution as they drop, one by one,
    Trudging step by step through a wilderness.
        What visions might have made them so
    Strangely here at home?


     
                                   from 'De Mortuis'
     

    Christopher Middleton’s Collected Poems gathers over half a century’s inventive, brilliant writing by one of Britain’s genuinely Modern poets. Here is an English writer, a European sensibility, of exhilarating originality and passion. His concerns, he declares, include the strictly articulated tension between Being and Nothing, the stance and dance of sundry creatures, the nothing as a gerund, destructive evils as force. We will look here in vain for single ‘voice’, though there is unprecedented singularity in the sheer variousness of his poetry’s worlds.
    Christopher Middleton, born in Cornwall in 1926, is a poet and translator, especially of German literature. He studied at Merton College, Oxford and held academic positions at the University of Zürich and King’s College London before becoming Professor of Germanic Languages at the University of Texas, Austin. He retired in ... read more
    '€˜a poet with a disconcerting knack of making it new in almost every poem'
    John Lucas, New Statesman
    '€˜His work is at once rich and sparse, elegantly economic in its subtle shifts from discrete object to discrete object, yet, by contrast with mainstream English realism, striking for the boldness and brio of its imaginings.'
    Terry Eagleton, Stand
    'Metrically inventive and various, these poems are remarkably alive to "€œthe unknown thing beside us"€, they listen for "the due sound"€, and, as if watching birds, register "€œthe timed flight of words". A motto for reading Middleton'€™s work might be: purify the source, then trust to luck.'
    Denis Donoghue, London Review of Books
    'Middleton is amongst the most consistently inventive, original, and audacious of the so-called '€˜experimental' or '€˜innovative'€™ poets of these past twenty-five years.'
    August Kleinzahler, Threepenny Review
    Praise for Christopher Middleton 'The poet's ancestry, his Englishness, is relegated without denial. But the movement, whether it is generated in America, Provence or Cappadocia, is always of encounter...if an eroticism, with the inner and the outer, a profound in-touchness with the multiplicities of existence... a mark of all important poets'
    Tom Lowenstein
    'Poems, translations, essays -€“ Christopher Middleton’s are among the most visited books on my shelves; always dependable for re-exciting the possibilities of language.'
    Jennie Feldman

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