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The Oxford Book of Christmas Poems Paperback – 3 Nov 2005

25 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: OUP Oxford; Reissue edition (3 Nov. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0192782290
  • ISBN-13: 978-0192782298
  • Product Dimensions: 15.6 x 1 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,087,647 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Michael Harrison was born and educated in Oxford and later went to Durham University, where he gained a BA in Philosophy. He then taught at a farm school in North Queensland, Australia as a member of the Bush Brotherhood. He milked the herd of cows daily and travelled the bush taking services and funerals. Michael returned to Oxford to get a teaching qualification (A.C.E.) at the University, and has since taught in Hartlepool, London, and now in Oxford.

He has written for his own pleasure for as long as he can remember but now finds, to his surprise, that people will pay him for it.

Michael is married with two sons and lives in Oxford.

Product Description

Review

This is a superb collection: serious and funny, meditative and prayerful, narrative and in song-form. The illustrations by many artists are beautiful . . . an excellent gift. (The Malvern Gazette )

Like good Christmas pudding . . . exceedingly rich, and full of unexpected bits. (Good Housekeeping )

Book Description

A new edition of this popular and highly successful anthology of poems for Christmas

Inside This Book

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 7 Feb. 2011
Format: Paperback
A very enjoyable book of the best loved Christmas verse, from comical to amusing and to some serious issues with Christmas and our attitudes to the festive season.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Book Beaver on 25 Nov. 2011
Format: Paperback
This is a wonderful collection of Christmas prose - the genre of poetry is transcended by the inclusion of songs and narratives. The anthology has pieces that are humorous, melancholy, mediative and prayerful. The poets include Ted Hughes, John Betjeman, TS Eliot, Walter de la Mare, Dylan Thomas, Charles Causley, WH Auden and Roger McGough.
Highlights include Christmas Landscape by Laurie Lee, Christmas Shopping by Louis MacNeice, Journey Back to Christmas by Gwen Dunn, My Christmas : Mum's Christmas by Sarah Forsyth, Christmas by John Betjeman and In the Workhouse by George R Sims.
The illustrations are absolutely brilliant and are by a range of artists and embellish and complement this book with colour and black and white illustrations. They have a wide range of hues, and include iridescent views of snowy scenes as well as black images of a snowy night when a warm fireside urgently beckons.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By di on 30 Nov. 2010
Format: Paperback
The size, weight and style of this book make it so usable. The pictures add to the atmosphere of the poem's contents. The collection covers old favourites, and introduces some newer material too. It has appeal for most adult age groups. I have really enjoyed this collection as it is both an enhancement of the Christmas story, as well as being provocative and challenging to the way today's society perceives Christmas.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Guy reid-brown on 11 Dec. 2011
Format: Paperback
This one has been an Advent staple in the household every year since it was gifted back in 1999. The layout is excellent and the illustrations as produced by a variety of different and very talented artists are superb. The essence is of course the poems, and whilst there are utter delights from such famous names as Rudyard Kipling, John Betjeman, Thomas Hardy, W H Auden (this one really surprised me for whatever reason) and Dylan Thomas, a lot of the most intensely moving pieces are by perhaps more obscure names such as Gwen Dunn (my personal favourite of the anthology) Elizabeth Coatsworth, U. A. Fanthorpe and Raoul Ponchon (as translated by James Kirkup). Conversely, and I appreciate that poetical appreciation can be as subjective as musical, I found some entries by big hitters such as T S Eliot, Robert Graves and especially Ted Hughes to be on the dismal side - it could just be a personal thing, but I cannot think of a Ted Hughes poem on any subject as being anything other than the same poem.

I am still giving this five though, as I am sure others would like the ones that I don't go for personally. Also there is a gem from Robert Finch that shows that even back when this book was first produced in 1983, the dead hand of Cultural Marxism was casting its obnoxious spell on the Festive Season. Keeping the Christmas Traditions going may well be a key to getting through this dark age to the other side - after all, it is all about the Birth, and I have an intuition that Christmas is an essential element in the resurrection of Goodness.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By rach fitz on 6 Feb. 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is just a beautiful book of poetry - the illustrations and the poems are both amazing and this is definitely a book I will enjoy for many christmases to come!
There is a good mix of secular and nativity based poems
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By jojoss on 29 Dec. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was a great hit with the recipients who were both adults. It is well illustrated and the collection of Christmas poems has well known and more unusual poems. I would definitely buy it again for Christmas gifts as the price is also very acceptable.
I would suggest it is a book to pass down in a family.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Susan on 1 Feb. 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read several of these during our Chapel's Christmas service and its just a lovely volume of seasonal verse.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Elizabeth S. Wells VINE VOICE on 24 Dec. 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This excellent Christmas anthology has everything, from old favourites, to pieces that were entirely new to me. Equally, the selection includes pieces hundreds of year old, to the more contemporary. A book to treasure and enjoy, beyond the Christmas season.
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