The Malarkey by Helen Dunmore

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The personal poems are superb and anything but self-indulgent...She has written affecting prose pieces about Donne's portrait and Keats's last days and a beautiful poem looking in on Hardy writing after the death of his wife.
-Guardian

Synopsis

The malarkey is over in the back of the car… As soon as you turn your back, time slips. The humdrum present has become the precious, irrecoverable past. The ways in which the present longs for the past, questions it, tries to get in touch with it and stretches the power of memory to its limits, are central to this new collection by Helen Dunmore. Joseph Severn recalls Keats hurling a bad dinner out onto the steps of the Piazza di Spagna; the glamour of John Donne's portrait 'taken in shadows' seduces a new generation; the dead assert their right to walk through the imaginations of the living… These are poems and stories of loss and extraordinary rediscovery. The Malarkey is Helen Dunmore's first poetry book since Glad of These Times (2007) and Out of the Blue: Poems 1975-2001 (2001), a comprehensive selection drawing on seven previous collections. It brings together poems of great lyricism, feeling and artistry. 'What is wonderful is the unusual way her steadiness as a writer serves as a foil to the mysterious. She prefers to show, not tell…The passing of time is crucial in this collection and especially its most violent trick of making years disappear in a moment…a collection filled with extraordinary, incorporeal moments and with vanishing acts…The personal poems are superb and anything but self-indulgent' -Kate Kellaway, Observer 'Her latest collection is a clear-eyed, sometimes funny, sometimes sad, meditation on time past and people lost…a superbly structured collection in which poems echo and answer each other' -Suzi Feay, Independent on Sunday
 

About Helen Dunmore

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Helen Dunmore was born on December 12, 1952. She is a British poet, novelist and children's writer. She attended the University of York. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. Some of her children's books are now included in reading schemes for use in schools. Her titles include Zennor in Darkness, Your Blue-Eyed Boy, House of Orphans and The Greatcoat. She made the Ondaatje Prize 2015 shortlist with her title The Lie.
 
Published June 28, 2012 by Bloodaxe Books. 72 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction
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All: 2 | Positive: 2 | Negative: 0

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Sean O'Brien on Jul 20 2012

The Malarkey is Helen Dunmore's best collection, the work of a grown-up for grown-ups who will remember what in the nature of things they've had to lose and what nevertheless they seek to celebrate.

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Guardian

Excellent
Reviewed by Kate Kellaway on Jul 07 2012

The personal poems are superb and anything but self-indulgent...She has written affecting prose pieces about Donne's portrait and Keats's last days and a beautiful poem looking in on Hardy writing after the death of his wife.

Read Full Review of The Malarkey | See more reviews from Guardian

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