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As I Walked Out One Evening: Songs, Ballads, Lullabies, Limericks, and Other Light Verse [Paperback]

W.H. Auden
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
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Book Description

21 Oct 1996
A collection of W.H. Auden's light verse, assembled by his literary executor.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber; New Ed edition (21 Oct 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0571178987
  • ISBN-13: 978-0571178988
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 578,259 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

W. H. Auden was born in York in 1907 and brought up in Birmingham. His first book, Poems, was published by T. S. Eliot at Faber in 1930. He went to Spain during the civil war, to Iceland (with Louis MacNeice) and later travelled to China. In 1939 he and Christopher Isherwood left for America, where Auden spent the next fifteen years lecturing, reviewing, writing poetry and opera librettos, and editing anthologies. He became an American citizen in 1946, and was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1948. In 1956 he was elected Professor of Poetry at Oxford, and a year later went to live in Kirchstetten in Austria, after spending several summers on Ischia. He died in Vienna in 1973.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
This book brings together some of the lighter verses written by Auden between 1929 and 1969 and offers a wonderfully enjoyable glimpse of his poetry. Containing 82 of Auden's shorter poems, this book shows the wit and genius which the poet used to create his work. Whether you are new to Auden's work (or new to poetry altogether) or are a fan looking to expand your collection, this book will delight and entertain you for countless hours, once you pick it up you will not want to put it back down again, and will return to it again and again.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Poetry Workshop 10 Sep 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The blurb comments on how WHA seemed to gather the whole tradition of English verse
under his belt and refashion it: and it's true. The refashioning also shows a tirelessly
innovative poet in his own right: always looking for new syllable/rhyme/verse schemes.
If you want to put yourself through the mill re. the English language,
then imitate (and take off from) this little book. It's amusing, poignant
and only occasionally modernist-opaque. 'Worth every penny, henny.'
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Lighter verse 18 Sep 2009
By Eileen Shaw TOP 1000 REVIEWER
There is at times too much of the cynic in this - a collection of the `lighter' verse of W H Auden. There is the famous "Stop all the clocks" poem - which is wonderful, despite being tainted by its inclusion in an otherwise fairly execrable film; the marvellous "night mail" which is impossible to read without a ghostly steam train in the head and one or two others which raise a laugh or make one stop a moment to think.

On the whole, however, there is also much that is so cynical and locked in its particular time that it says nothing much to anyone not - or so I imagine - an intimate of Auden's poetical circle. I wanted something a little more universal, but perhaps I have to read the more obscure and serious poems for that? He's quite a daunting poet in any case - such sinewy power resides in some of these squibby pieces that it's like looking for gold in a pan of river shale. Here's a gleam of wit, there a sudden piercing dart that lights the whole in a shock of understanding. But too much of this poetry is like an exquisite gift wrapped in dirty newspaper.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 5.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Introduction 15 Dec 2006
By Prithvi Karthikeyan - Published on
This slim volume is exemplary of how quantity is not an appropriate indicator of poetic genius. I would consider this book 'Auden- Lite'and a very apt first volume of Auden's poetry. The volume has several of Auden's famous poems like 'Funeral Blues' of the Four Weddings and a Funeral fame and 'Lullaby'. While it doesn't do complete justice to Auden's spritual side it has plenty of doggerel verse including 'Jam Tart' and some very amusing short poems. Auden's versatility is very impressive and there is an Edwardian charm coupled with a strikingly modern sensibility that make this anthology very enjoyable.
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