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Selected Poems
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 12 January 2013
This generous and representative selection contains the full range of Hill's extraordinary work, which ranges from historical poems, to erotic allegories, and explores every stylistic variant: from traditional rhyming stanzas to free verse that bundles up mutiple viewpoints and quickly shifting subject matter.

The newer verse is more difficult to grasp than the earlier work, but once you get into it, it's a more authentic voice than the beautifully polished material he created in the 50s and 60s.

'Mercian Hymns', which mixes up his West Midland childhood, is both brialliant and funny.

Hill certainly adheres to a concept of high culture - he isn't for those who don't also care about history and religion and culture - but actually he does embody what is normally unspoken in our society: a deep disgust at politics, anger at our political leaders (and their 'service counsel') and reflections on our Empire and the two world wars which destroyed it, from the perspective of soneone who can remember Coventry burning.

Read it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 27 December 2013
Selected Poems (being subjective) inevitably are no substitute for the Collected anthologies but happily this selection covers over fifty years of Hill's output and includes his structured prose masterpieces 'The Mystery of the Charity of Charles Peguy'' (1983) and the more recent 'Orchards of Syon' and his earlier with 'Funeral Music:An Essay' (an 8 part sequence) and of course his notable 1971 'Mercian Hymns' .Hill of course can be difficult to read ,without a doubt, although many of his poems are best read aloud(as is applicable to poetry in general) to gain a fuller understanding. Nothwithstanding the collection contains many jewels of imagist lines ( an oasis in the desert so to speak)and a reward for the effort by the reader .Few other poets cover his range of topics in their posie and this book illustrates why he is so highly rated as an English language poet
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 8 February 2013
A wonderful and thought provoking collection of poems. A book to read, re-read and browse for life.
I can recommend it if you like serious poetry.
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on 11 January 2015
This is a fine selection from the majority of Hill's work over the last 60 years – more has been written since this 2006 publication, but otherwise the best is here.

Close fans of his work should note that this edition contains some revisions; from the off, for example, one notices that the revised opening of the first poem, 'Genesis', with its first stanza docked from three lines to two, is offered instead of the original. None of this much matters, however.

The only striking omission – the only thing keeping my review from a 5* – is 'In Memory of Jane Fraser', Hill's beautiful metrical elegy, sometimes subtitled 'An Attempted Reparation'. It's one of my favourite poems of all time, and while this alone should not warrant lost marks generally for the book, from an unbiased perspective it seems a major Hill poem to exclude, nonetheless. Hill has found it irksome over the years, however, so this may explain the lacunae.
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9 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 2 November 2009
Selected Poems

I find that Mr. Hill has progressed from a highly formal, carefully structured verse form to a looser, more boldly imaginative vernacular which is highly reminiscent, to my mind, of the transition made in Robert Lowell's writing career with equivalent results. Both are major poets who have shaped the way verse can be written and daringly re-imagined themselves in mid-career.
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on 8 October 2014
Quick delivery, good quality book
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on 19 May 2015
the greatest living poet
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on 23 May 2015
vgood
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2 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 10 February 2013
I was expecting for Geoffrey Hill's poems to be hard work. Unfortunately they proved too hard for me. It's gone to the charity shop after I read the first two book extracts.
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15 of 55 people found the following review helpful
on 25 May 2008
A huge disappointment. Starts off presciently with dazzling pieces from Hill's earliest work (For the Unfallen), then (with one or two exceptions) rapidly descends into impenetrable, autistic, verbiage which, sadly, is not intended to be illuminating. Hill is constipated with complex, tortuous ideas, which he is unable to translate into verse. But this is just as well because he does not consider his readers worthy of his thoughts. A big question mark continues to hang over Hill's credentials. His Selected Poems do not help his cause.
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