Nefertiti in the Flak Tower: Poems

Nefertiti in the Flak Tower: Poems


By (author) Clive James

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  • Publisher: WW Norton & Co
  • Format: Hardback | 96 pages
  • Dimensions: 145mm x 213mm x 10mm | 249g
  • Publication date: 19 November 2013
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 0871407116
  • ISBN 13: 9780871407115
  • Sales rank: 458,663

Product description

Clive James s renown as an internationally celebrated poet continues to expand, and there is no stronger evidence for this than Nefertiti in the Flak Tower, a collection steeped in the lessons of Philip Larkin and W.B. Yeats (London Times). Here, his polymathic learning and technical virtuosity are worn more lightly than ever; the effect is to produce a deep sense of trust into which the reader gratefully sinks, knowing they are in the presence of a master. The most obvious token of that mastery is the book s breathtaking range of theme: there are moving elegies, a meditation on the later Yeats, a Hollywood Iliad, and odes to rare orchids, wartime typewriters, and sharks as well as a poem on the fate of Queen Nefertiti in Nazi Germany. Despite the dizzying variety, James s poetic intention becomes increasingly clear: what marks this new collection is his intensified concentration on the individual poem as a self-contained universe. Poetry is a practice he compares (in Numismatics ) to striking new coin, and Nefertiti in the Flak Tower is a treasure chest of one-off marvels, with each poem a twin-sided, perfect human balance of the unashamedly joyous and the deadly serious, whose play of light pays tribute to the dark. "

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Review quote

Mr. James is a canny poet as well as a critic and memoirist, and this elegiac book finds him confronting illness and old age with vigor and salty wit. When he writes about a dead friend, Your poems were the condensation trails/Of a bright mind s steady rush of soaring power, he could be speaking of this very volume. --Dwight Garner"