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Poems on the Underground [Abridged, Audiobook, CD, Unabridged] [Audio CD]

Gerard Benson , Cicely Herbert , Judith Chernaik
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Book Description

5 Jan 2006


(1) London

(2) Love

(3) Men and Women

(4) Everything Changes.

(5) Birds and Beasts, Stars and Planets

(6) The Poet Speaks

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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Orion; Unabridged edition (5 Jan 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0752874217
  • ISBN-13: 978-0752874210
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 14.1 x 12.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 485,941 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Amazon Review

"Poetry arrived/ in search of me" --Pablo Neruda

Launched in 1986 and now an established part of every London tube-traveller's experience, the Poems On The Underground project has proved a hugely successful attempt to introduce poetry into the city's public spaces and has since been taken up by many of the world's major cities as well as many smaller ones. Serendipitous and surprising, the encounter with poetry in the urban environment is often enlivening and provocative--a tribute to the enthusiasm of the editors.

This new edition, twice as long as its predecessor, is partly organised around the current programme "1,000 years of English Poetry" but also contains poems "exchanged" with those chosen in other countries; the book thus contains an enormous range of verse from around the world and from past to present day, finding a place for the witty and the profound alike, for light verse as well as the serious or gnomic, for the popular and the more obscure. Some poets are represented by their most well-known pieces--Shelley's Ozymandias, Auden's Song (made famous by its inclusion in the film Four Weddings and a Funeral)--others by less familiar but no less potent poems. The current project also exhumes wonderful examples of early and middle English verse, an indication of the long and vital tradition of British poetry. Hopefully, future editions will find room for more poems in translation and more modern American verse (surely the most vital space for modern poetry in English).

The almost haphazard nature of the selection--based on the principles of pleasure rather than dogma--result in a generous and happily democratic collection that is, paradoxically, a far stronger and more persuasive argument for the ongoing vitality of poetry than many more argumentative anthologies. The chance encounter with an affecting poem or unfamiliar poet is ample reason to invest in this book--where else would one find Elizabeth Barrett Browning, John Betjeman, Paul Celan, Spike Milligan, Emily Dickinson and Guillaume Apollinaire sharing space together? Last words to Christopher Logue: "Last night in London Airport / I saw a wooden bin/ labelled UNWANTED LITERATURE / IS TO BE PLACED HEREIN./ So I wrote a poem/ and popped it in." No longer so unwanted, thanks to this book. --Burhan Tufail --This text refers to the Paperback edition.


Now re-issued as a CD, you can enjoy the sublime verse and the thoughts of the world's greatest poets on London, love and other crucial subjects on your Walkman or iPod. (Lou Wakefield Waterstone's Books Quarterly)

A collection of classic and contemporary poems, some read by the authors, to engage you from station to station. (SAGA)

For those of us with occasional Attention Deficit Disorder, here are 79 poems classic and modern, read by the writers, and most lasting under a minute. (SAGA)

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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Something for everyone in this little gem 10 Jun 2003
By A Customer
This anthology is, for my money, the best introduction to poetry around at the moment. Having started in the London Underground, it reflects the cosmopolitan makeup of that city. There's something from almost every corner of the world here - the Caribbean, medieval Ireland, several poems in translation... plus excellent (and sometimes very humorous) notes on the poems. There are classics too, such as the famous poem by Auden used in Four Weddings and a Funeral (the original title is simply "Song".)
If you'd like to own a very good, accessible poetry anthology but you're frightened by the size of, say, the Norton anthology, buy this one instead.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Intro To Poetry 29 April 2009
This is a great book as an introduction to all the great poets and also serves as a pretty good anthology. There are some classic poems from authors you would expect to see here as well as some lesser known ones. This doesn't just restrict itself to English poets either with contributions from Europe and Australia. I especially enjoyed the more comical poems and ditties along with their illustrations.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Poems on the Underground - 10th edition 1 Feb 2009
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Never beaten as an anthology of taster poetry. I've always loved these poems. Love to read them on the tube and in the book. Especially useful for people who think poetry is boring. These pieces most certainly are not. They often amuse and always strike home.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Poems on the Underground by Gerard Benson 13 Jun 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I read his Obituary in The Telegraph and remembered reading some of them on the Underground. The book is in excellent condition and is great fun.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Totally loving this little book of poems. 30 Nov 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
First of all, I've never ever written nor read many poems. I was not fortunate enough to receive a good education throughout my childhood, but I made it to uni eventually. I met someone here who recommended me this book as great way to get into literature. I saw the book and didn't think it was one of those stuck-up books.

Well... I was reading through the pages on the bus, and I started reading Sonnet 29 by billy you-know-who, and something about the sonnet astonished. I wasn't sure what exactly, but it just looked beautiful, I didn't understand it entirely but got the gist of it. Then I went online and I realised that the sonnet had a specific structure that made it so elegant.

I'm starting to learn more about poetry, structures, analyses etc. even though I'm doing a completely irrelevant degree, but hey, anyone can learn whatever they want, right?
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