Crow
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Crow : From the Life and Songs of the Crow

By (author) Ted Hughes

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Crow was Ted Hughes' fourth book of poems for adults and a pivotal moment in his writing career. In it, he found both a structure and a persona that gave his vision a new power and coherence. A deep engagement with history, mythology and the natural world combine to forge a work of impressive and unsettling force. "English poetry has found a new hero and nobody will be able to read or write verse now without the black shape of Crow falling across the page." (Peter Porter).

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  • Paperback | 112 pages
  • 130 x 192 x 10mm | 140.62g
  • 03 Sep 2001
  • FABER & FABER
  • Faber & Faber Poetry
  • London
  • English
  • Main
  • 0571099157
  • 9780571099153
  • 61,835

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Author Information

Ted Hughes (1930-1998) was born in Yorkshire. His first book, The Hawk in the Rain, was published in 1957 by Faber and Faber and was followed by many volumes of poetry and prose for adults and children, including The Iron Man (1968). He received the Whitbread Book of the Year for both Tales from Ovid (1997) and Birthday Letters (1998). He was Poet Laureate from 1984, and in 1998 he was appointed to the Order of Merit.

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Review text

In Ted Hughes' latest book of poems, Crow's existence is as indeterminate as his landscape, a galactic emptiness mysteriously flashing images of cities, beasts, demons, bullets, Biblical figures. It and he bring one very close to "nature red in tooth and claw" and the original business of eating or being eaten. Crow's lears and rages are elemental, and his cruelties as guiltless as an animal's; yet he uses numbers for vivisection and hunts with words, and deals cocksurely with Death and God (going so far as to eat a chunk of Him), whose attributes he shares. . . . A visceral understanding is the best one can hope for, and with the aid of chant-like forms and tom-tom rhythms it is relatively easy to achieve. That's not all that's visceral, however, as readers of Hughes' previous books well know. Some will certainly conclude that his highly praised "exuberantly horrid imagination" is not worth the blood it drips, but pro or con this latest example will be talked about and in no moderate terms. (Kirkus Reviews)

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