Poetry Speaks: Hear Great Poets Read Their Work from Tennyson to Plath available in Hardcover
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Poetry Speaks: Hear Great Poets Read Their Work from Tennyson to Plath based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
This book is based on a good idea i.e.,enabling the reader of poetry to also be its listener,the listener of the poet reading their own poetry .This is enhanced by having distinguished contemporary poets write brief commentaries on the various poets of the anthology . The great problem I found with the work was with the realization of these ideas.For the first poets presented ,Tennyson Browning and Whitman, there is the poor quality of the recording at the time these poets lived. But this technical problem does not play a part with the other poets. With them very often the problem is that we hear from them work which is not their best.The anthology too includes a fairly large number of quite undistinguished poets . There are of course great and moving moments in the readings.Sandburg provides such , as does Frost in his way. There are also revelatory moments as in the chilling tone of Plath's reading which frightens in its deadening inhumanity.The perhaps most remarkable reader of his own poetry in modern times,Dylan Thomas is strong here also. The anthology 's perhaps greatest strength is the feel of a flowingness in poetry throughout .The expert's comments are brief and not very interesting for anyone who knows the poet's work well .There is little on a deep critical level here. This is a popular anthology but my sense is it could have been done in a better way. Is there by the way no religious poetry in the modern era? So again this work does give much it is also disappointing . The poem I willed / I could not write/ The poem I wrote/ became my life.
It is a little unusual at first to hear the actual voice recordings of the great poets. The recordings of William Butler Yeats, Tennyson, Robert Browning, e. e. cummings, Dorothy Parker, Langston Hughes, Allen Ginsberg, Sylvia Plath, Gwendolyn Brooks, are all included reading their own works. What I find interesting is their individual style of reading. One one level it is fascinating to hear their actual voices and that brings a new dimension to how one might have interpreted their works in the past. On another level some of the voices may not bring forth the poetic character one might expect from a poet who is prolific in writing words yet less masterful in their spoken delivery. Still this is a great rare collection and a wonderful reference to the recorded words of these legendary poets. Certainly hearing Allen Ginsberg in contrast to still living great poets Seamus Heaney and Robert Pinsky brings to light the great weaves and textures words spoken from these authors bring. The book brings to life the poems in print form adding a short biography and photo of each poet. The book is well researched and you can read some original writings and reproduced manuscripts. Some of the earlier recordings were probably remastered and still sound like they were recorded with old world technology and that is to be expected. Otherwise this is an excellent -must have - collection.