The most cherished of poets, Philip Larkin is a writer with an unrivalled ability to touch readers with his evocations of English life. The Whitsun Weddings, his first volume with Faber and Faber, was published in 1964. This Faber Modern Classics edition includes a foreword by Alan Johnson MP. "Larkin, with his (in the best sense) provincial eye, ...
The most cherished of poets, Philip Larkin is a writer with an unrivalled ability to touch readers with his evocations of English life. The Whitsun Weddings, his first volume with Faber and Faber, was published in 1964. This Faber Modern Classics edition includes a foreword by Alan Johnson MP. "Larkin, with his (in the best sense) provincial eye, and his unparalleled ear, is the supreme writer of post-war England." (Telegraph). "Larkin's originality is palpable...Who else uses an essentially conversational idiom to achieve such a variety of emotional effects? Who else takes us, and takes us so often, from sunlit levity to mellifluous gloom? And let it be emphasised that Larkin is never 'depressing'.." (Martin Amis).
Good. Connecting readers with great books since 1972. Used books may not include companion materials, some shelf wear, may contain highlighting/notes, may not include cd-om or access codes. Customer service is our top priority!
Very Good+ in Wraps: shows indications of very careful use: just a touch of wear to the extremities; mild rubbing and the faintest soiling to the wrapper covers; the pages have tanned somewhat, due to aging; the binding is square and secure; the text is clean. no longer pristine, but remains close to 'As New'. NOT a Remainder, Book-Club, or Ex-Library. 8vo. 46pp. First Edition Thus USA ; Tenth Printing . Trade Paperback. Philip Larkin (1922-1985) remains England's best-loved poet-a writer matchlessly capable of evoking his native land and of touching all readers from the most sophisticated intellectual to the proverbial common reader. The late John Betjeman observed that 'this tenderly observant poet writes clearly, rhythmically, and thoughtfully about what all of us can understand'. Behind this modest description lies a poet who made greatness look, in Milton's prescription, 'simple, sensuous and passionate'. Philip Larkin's fifth collection of poetry, The Whitsun Weddings, was the one that firmly established him as one of Britain's major poets. He remains today one of the best-known and most popular British neoformalists. A devotee of Yeats, Hardy, and Dylan Thomas, Larkin never wears his influences too far away from his sleeve, but don't begrudge him that; marvel, instead, that in the turbulent anything-goes sixties lived a poet, misanthrope, and mild-mannered librarian (all in the same body, no less! ) who swam against a stream of free verse and wrote, arguably, better formal verse than anyone since Swinburne. Larkin is a master of enjambment; if you encountered a random Larkin poem isolated from a collection, you might well not realize it's a formal poem until you're well into it, a hallmark of the best formal work. It reads easily and well, and Larkin never allows the meter and rhyme to get in the way of image; in short, Larkin combines the best traits of both lyric and narrative poetry, and packages them up neatly for the reader in small verse of purest pleasure. Okay, I've just spent two paragraphs describing the best of Larkin's work. Thankfully, this collection is more "best" than "worst." But one of the tragedies of the formal poet, and one no formal poet (save, perhaps, Dante Alighieri) has ever been able to avoid, is that when you're not on top of your game, slipping a notch or two down the ladder of quality leads to the steepest of descents. The sublime can become the ridiculous far faster in formal verse than in free verse, leading to a judgment of "when he screws up, man, does he REALLY screw up." Such is the case with Larkin. The dulcet tones and free-flowing nature of his best work curdle in the mouth when he's off form, leaving trite rhymes, dull rhythms, and some of the most godawful thumping lines one is likely to see outside Helen Steiner Rice. Still, as I said, there is far less bad than good in The Whitsun Weddings, and it does deserve its place in the annals of British literature. For those who wonder where all the formal verse has gone, Philip Larkin is one of the four or five modern poets to whom anyone can point to say "verse may be out of favor, but believe me, it is still alive and well.
Alibris, the Alibris logo, and Alibris.com are registered trademarks of Alibris, Inc.
Copyright in bibliographic data and cover images is held by Nielsen Book Services Limited, Baker & Taylor, Inc., or by their respective licensors, or by the publishers, or by their respective licensors. For personal use only. All rights reserved. All rights in images of books or other publications are reserved by the original copyright holders.