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The Man With Night Sweats Paperback – 4 Mar 2002

4.0 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber; Main edition (4 Mar. 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0571162576
  • ISBN-13: 978-0571162574
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 0.8 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 85,714 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

"The tension of Gunn's famous earlier poems, which adventurously drew on classical themes (Achilles and Patroclus), pop icons (Presley and Brando), and existential extremes, has, in his first new collection in ten years, become muted and commemorative . . . Gunn moves with a colloquial ease and a kind of epigrammatic grace through a variety of quatrains, coupleted monologues, Skeltonic variations, and occasional free verse."--John Updike," The New Yorker "The great and undeniable potency of The Man with Night Sweats comes from the poet's huge restraint, as much as from his tragic subject matter . . . The Man with Night Sweats shows a poet at the top of his form, gathering his world into art without ever choking off passion. The formidable craft behind these poems--the metrical, syllabic, and rhyming intricacy--is translucent, but there to buoy the emotion like an invisible net."--Matthew Gilbert, "The Boston Globe "Perhaps his most wary, moving, personal book to date. It is a forceful reminder that Gunn . . . is one of the most singular and compelling poets in English during the past half-century . . . He writes of and from the modern climate, as if wholly at home here; these new poems have a claim to be some of the most authentic occasional poems of our time."--Hugh Haughton, "The Times Literary Supplement "What Gunn is continually attempting to grasp or understand in this book is the condition of those around him, strangers and lovers alike, and we treasure his tone of brotherly forbearance as he makes his way . . . Gunn is a definatly unsuitable poet--a formalist who often writes in free verse, an Englishman living in America, an autobiographical poet whose subjectselude the self . . . The book, divided into four sections, begins with poems boldly erotic and ends at 'death's door' . . . Yet amid all this astringent life experience, astonishingly, a profound hope emerges."--Henri Cole, The Nation

Book Description

The Man With Night Sweats by Thom Gunn displays Gunn's unparalleled ability to move between classical forms and looser, more colloquial measures - while always remaining a deeply moving and affecting poet.

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Format: Paperback
Just to add a note of disagreement on the one star review above. This was my first introduction to Gunn's poems, and I found them accomplished, elegant and deeply moving.
Gunn maintains the formal poetic structures of his english roots (he went to Cambridge during the 50s and was influenced by his english contemporaries) with delicate metres and rhyme schemes. But he enthuses these with the informalism of theme and idiom from his Californian and American neighbours and friends after moving to the states in the sixties - admiring the beats, and their lifestyle, but never letting his own structured verse collapse.
This collection reflects the strengths of both these approaches, and with laments and memorials to lost friends and lovers to HIV (and puzzlement at his own survival) it sounds immediately fresh, honest and also with depth and wonderful surprises unveiled by reading aloud (preferably in bed at night to those you love). If in doubt read 'To Isherwood Dying'.
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Format: Paperback
Fantastic. I can't think of a more moving book of poems about human frailty, love, friendship and death. I'd also like to contradict the information in the one-star review: there's very little to do with nature in this book and neither is there really that wide a variety of disparate themes. The vast majority of poems are actually urban elegies addressed to dead or dying friends. Gunn is gay and many of the poems address the AIDS crisis in its first Western manifestation in metropolitan centres in the 1980s. It's an incredibly powerful and heart-breaking collection, partly because it is so focussed on the human body and the pains it goes through. Highly, highly recommended.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
On of the greatest book of poems of the twentieth century!
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Format: Paperback
The best of this group of poems was powerful and tender, but they did seem to have a variety of disparate themes, which didn't help. There was also a feeling that the descriptions of nature were acting as a block instead of a conduit to the actual sense of them.
That said, I would certainly buy other works by this poet.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a fantastic book. A true classic page turner you cannot go wrong purchasing this book. Imaginative and hunting read.
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