Strange Meetings: The Lives of the Poets of the Great War

Strange Meetings: The Lives of the Poets of the Great War

Paperback

By (author) Harry Ricketts

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  • Publisher: PIMLICO
  • Format: Paperback | 288 pages
  • Dimensions: 153mm x 234mm x 22mm | 404g
  • Publication date: 1 November 2012
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 1845951808
  • ISBN 13: 9781845951801
  • Illustrations note: Illustrations, ports.
  • Sales rank: 464,126

Product description

Strange Meetings provides a highly original account of the War Poets of 1914-1918, written through a series of actual encounters, or near-encounters, from Siegfried Sassoon's first, blushing meeting with Rupert Brooke over kidneys and bacon at Eddie Marsh's breakfasts before the war, through famous moments like Sassoon's encouragement of Wilfred Owen when both were in hospital, on to the last, strange lunch and 'longish talk' of Sassoon and David Jones in 1964, half a century after the Great War began. Among the other poets and writers we encounter are Vera Brittain, Roland Leighton, Robert Graves, Isaac Rosenberg, Robert Nichols and Edmund Blunden. We follow their relationships, marking their responses to each other's work and showing how these affected their own poetry. We come to know each of the poets, their family and intellectual backgrounds and their very different personalities. We get a fresh sense of Georgian poetry, conveying all the excitement and frustration of poetic creation, and demonstrating how the whole notion of what poetry should be 'about' became fractured and changed for ever by the terrible experiences of the war.

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Author information

Harry Ricketts is a poet, writer and critic. After studying English at Oxford he lectured in Hong Kong and Leicester and now teaches literature and creative writing at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. In addition to his collections of poetry, essays - and brilliant studies of cricket - his critical books include the acclaimed biography The Unforgiving Minute: A Life of Rudyard Kipling.

Review quote

"Constantly engaging, amiable account of one of the golden periods of English poetry" Literary Review "This fascinating book gives a realistic and very human account of the lives and works of these great poets" Financial Times "A haunting, almost cinematic group biography" -- David Kynaston Guardian "An unusual book which merits the attentions of anyone who cares about poetry" -- Robert Nye Tablet "Beautifully written and elegant" Daily Express

Editorial reviews

constantly engaging, amiable account of one of the golden periods of English poetry'

Back cover copy

Strange Meetings provides a highly original account of the War Poets of 1914-1918, written through a series of actual encounters, or near-encounters, from Siegfried Sassoon’s first, blushing meeting with Rupert Brooke over kidneys and bacon at Eddie Marsh’s breakfasts before the war, through famous moments like Sassoon’s encouragement of Owen when both are in hospital at the same time, on to the last, strange lunch and ‘longish talk’ of Sasoon and David Jones in 1964, half a century after the Great War began. Among the other poets and writers we encounter are Vera Brittain and Roland Leighton, Robert Graves, Isaac Rosenberg, Robert Nichols and Edmund Blunden. We follow their relationships, marking their response to each other’s work and showing how these affected their own poetry. We come to know each of the poets, their family and intellectual backgrounds and their very different personalities. We get a fresh sense of Georgian poetry, conveying all the excitement and frustration of poetic creation, and demonstrating how the whole notion of what poetry should be ‘about’ became fractured and changed for ever by the terrible experiences of the war. ‘Constantly engaging, amiable account of one of the golden periods of English poetry.’ Literary Review ‘Beautifully written and elegant’ Daily Express ‘Fascinating’ Independent