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Sidney Keyes: Collected Poems

Overview

Sidney Keyes was killed in action in Tunisia in 1943. He was twenty years old. With Keith Douglas and Alun Lewis he is regarded as one of the outstanding poets of World War II. Even before he was an undergraduate, Sidney Keyes was something of a prodigy, producing verse of remarkable accomplishment. A celebrated Oxford poem, 'Remember Your Lovers' ('Young men walking the open streets/Of death's republic, remember your lovers.') was written in an exam room, when he had finished early. A nature poet by inclination,...
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Overview

Sidney Keyes was killed in action in Tunisia in 1943. He was twenty years old. With Keith Douglas and Alun Lewis he is regarded as one of the outstanding poets of World War II. Even before he was an undergraduate, Sidney Keyes was something of a prodigy, producing verse of remarkable accomplishment. A celebrated Oxford poem, 'Remember Your Lovers' ('Young men walking the open streets/Of death's republic, remember your lovers.') was written in an exam room, when he had finished early. A nature poet by inclination, he was drawn to the work of Holderlin and Rilke, taking them -- paradoxically -- to war against the Germans. They draw out his essentially Wordsworthian temperament; he was also touched by the very different imaginative worlds of Schiller and of Paul Klee. A passion for the microcosmic coexists with an ability to deal with large truths in his own voice or to enter into the imagination of others, of Clare and Yeats for example. Though he died very young, his achievement is real. His dramatic monologues, his poems of landscape, of the weird and macabre, and his mastery of blank verse set him apart.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Above all, he was the first truly English poet effectively to marry Continental symbolism to the English Romantic tradition.”  —Michael Meyer, editor, Collected Poems
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781857545807
  • Publisher: Carcanet Press, Limited
  • Publication date: 6/2/2002
  • Pages: 180
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.65 (d)

Meet the Author

Sidney Keyes (1922–1943) is considered one of the outstanding poets of World War II. After two weeks of active service, he died in combat in Tunisia, at the age of 20.

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Table of Contents

Introduction
Preface to the 1988 edition
Elegy 1
Prospero 1
Nocturne for Four Voices 3
Lament for Dead Symbolists 6
Nefertiti 6
Fragment: 'Shall the Dead Return?' 7
Greenwich Observatory 8
The Buzzard 9
Cervieres 10
Remember Your Lovers 12
Sour Land 13
William Yeats in Limbo 15
Being not Proud 15
Advice for a Journey 16
Two Variations 17
Elegy for Mrs. Virginia Woolf 18
Paul Klee 18
Poem for May the First 19
Poem for Milein Cosman 19
Gilles de Retz 20
Europe's Prisoners 21
The Anti-Symbolist 22
Ploughman 23
St. John Baptist 24
A Garland for John Clare 24
Neutrality 26
For M.C., Written in the Train 27
Extracts from 'A Journey through Limbo' 27
William Wordsworth 30
Pheasant 30
The Glass Tower in Galway 31
A Letter from Tartary 33
Don Juan in Winter 34
All Souls: A Dialogue 35
Time will not Grant 38
Lover's Complaint 38
A Renunciation 39
Holstenwall 40
The Bards 41
Against Divination 41
Against a Second Coming 42
Glaucus 46
Troll Kings 46
The Island City 47
Schiller Dying 48
Little Drawda 50
The Parrot 50
The Cruel Solstice 51
Branwen Sailing to Ireland 52
Sonnet i.m. The Lady Elizabeth Hastings 54
The Snow 54
The Migrant 55
The Mad Lady and the Proud Talker 55
The Foreign Gate 57
Simon Magus 67
Early Spring 67
Lament for Adonis 68
Hopes for a Lover 68
Lament for Harpsichord: The Flowering Orchards 69
Medallion 69
Anarchy 70
War Poet 70
To Keep off Fears 71
A Hope for Those Separated by War 71
Ulster Soldier 72
The True Heart 72
The Vines are Planted 73
Dunbar, 1650 74
Images of Distress 74
The Uncreated Images 75
Not Chosen 75
Two Offices of a Sentry 76
Song: The Heart's Assurance 77
Design for a Monument 77
Night Estuary 78
The Gardener 78
Orestes and the Furies 79
Seascape 80
The Kestrels 81
Dido's Lament for Aeneas 81
Figure of a Bird and a Ring 82
Rome Remember 82
The Doubtful Season 83
The Promised Landscape 84
Timoshenko 85
The Poet 85
The Expected Guest 86
Epithalamium 86
North Sea 87
Four Postures of Death 88
William Byrd 92
Moonlight Night on the Port 92
Actaeon's Lament 93
An Early Death 94
Poem from the North 94
The Grail 95
The Wilderness 97
South Wind 103
Cathay 103
Meditation of Phlebas the Phoenician 104
Richmond Park 104
Blues Song 105
Blues 105
Bix Blues 106
Letter to M.C., 31.vii.41 107
For Milein, 1.xii.41 108
Premature Poem for Milein 109
Mr. U Saw Blues 110
A Translation of Carmen XI by Catullus 111
Cold Comfort for Mr. Meyer 112
Memoir 113
Memoir 116
Memoir 124
Note to the 1945 edition 128
Notes 129
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