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5.0 out of 5 stars the anonymous man, 9 Sept. 2008
Paul Callick (manchester) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Collected Poems, 1951-92 (Paperback)
Melancholy now, to glance down this list of Causley's books: his rebranding as A Children's Poet. This is the only full collection which resembles the books of poems as they appeared (including many of the brilliant poems from the 1980s) and is a truly marvellous body of work. By contrast, the Picador collections are thematically arranged and targeted for school children, following the fate of equally strange (and deeply unfashionable) writers like Walter de la Mere back in the 1930s. It's as though a poet who's neither modernist nor a confessional, personal writer can't be incorporated into adult genres and discourses; the publishers run scared of publishing this stuff properly. Well, Causley's tradition ran back through Hardy, Housman, John Clare, Blake, to the medieval ballads, lyrics, well as Cornish sea-shanties and schoolyard songs. It's a tradition of pseudo-anonymity, relying on craft, pulse, and often something hallucinatory around the small stories and anecdotes, with the poet peering across the landscape and the years, to lives being lived elsewhere. Unlike Larkin, Amis et al, clever and sardonic, Causley's voice is level and gentle, with an often quietly aching tone, as if longing for those lives (usually of young men) he looks at, excluded (something else he shares with AE Housman). But there's also energy and wit, giving the poems tautness and fizz. Odd that a less interesting writer like RS Thomas (his near-contemporary) is still celebrated and properly published, but you'll have to search for good editions (like this one) of Causley's poems.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A poet who deserves to be known better, 11 Jun. 2013
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This review is from: Collected Poems, 1951-92 (Paperback)
Book arrived before time and contains a good comprehensive collection of poems by an author who deserves better recognition. It is good to get the chance to buy from an independent book shop via your media. All profits go to charity. Although not new the book is in excellent condition.
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Collected Poems, 1951-92
Collected Poems, 1951-92 by Charles Causley (Paperback - 21 Aug. 1992)
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