Collected Poems by Philip Larkin

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One of the best-known, best-loved poets of the English-speaking world, Larkin had a relatively small number of poems published during his lifetime. This Collected Poems, which J. D. McClatchy called "a fascinating and indispensable text" in The New York Times Book Review, brings together not only all of Larkin's published verse—The North Ship (1945), the pamphlet of XX Poems (1953), The Less Deceived (1955), The Whitsun Weddings (1964), and High Windows (1974)—but also a vast selection of his uncollected poetry. A brief Introduction by Anthony Thwaite illuminates both the life and verse of this highly perceptive and deeply acerbic poet, a dour yet witty soul whose brilliant writings so often suggest an ongoing conflict between the traditional and the modern.

About Philip Larkin

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Philip Larkin was a British poet, novelist, critic, and essayist. Born in 1922 in Coventry, England, he graduated from St. John's College, Oxford, in 1940 and then pursued a career as a librarian, becoming the librarian at the University of Hull in 1955. Although he led a retiring life and published infrequently, producing only one volume of poetry approximately every 10 years, Larkin was still considered one of the preeminent contemporary British poets. He is often associated with the "Movement," a 1950s literary group that, through the use of colloquial language and common, everyday subjects, endeavored to create poetry that would appeal to the common reader. However, this association came about mainly because Larkin's poem "Church Going," for which he first gained critical attention, was published in New Lines, an anthology of the "Movement" poets. In reality, his work, particularly his later poems, is not typical of the group. Larkin's published a total of only four volumes of poetry: The North Ship (1945), The Less Deceived (1955), The Whitsun Weddings (1964), and High Windows (1974). He also wrote two novels, Jill and A Girl in Winter, and published two volumes of prose, Required Writing and All That Jazz, a collection of his reviews of jazz records. Philip Larkin died in 1985.
Published October 10, 1988 by Faber & Faber. 357 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Collected Poems

The New York Times

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A collection of Philip Larkin's poems, this time only the ones he wanted to include.

May 30 2004 | Read Full Review of Collected Poems

The Guardian

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Collected Poems by Ted Hughes (Faber, £16.99).

Oct 07 2005 | Read Full Review of Collected Poems

The Guardian

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Harwood is, however, the least academic of poets - indeed one of the most charming and disarming aspects of the persona his poems embody is the way he so frankly and uninhibitedly commits himself to poetry itself, rather than theories about poetry, as the fullest and most authentic way of engagin...

Sep 17 2004 | Read Full Review of Collected Poems

The Guardian

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He defends Graham's rhetoric, but I feel that behind it is a prosaic voice at times - when he is in conversation - and this happens more in later poems.

Feb 28 2004 | Read Full Review of Collected Poems

The Telegraph

“Even you lot,” this teacher would say, “might draw the line at girls who looked like that.” During his national service in Germany, Hamilton wrote two plays, quickly destroyed, whose doleful titles – Like a Leper and Pity Me Not – amused him later on.

Mar 18 2013 | Read Full Review of Collected Poems

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