The Mower : New & Selected Poems
The Mower introduces the poetry of British poet laureate Andrew Motion to American readers for the first time. This selection, chosen by Andrew Motion himself, is an outstanding representation of the poet's varied body of work--elegies, sonnets, poems of social and political observation, and unsentimental poems about childhood, post-war England, and natural life--composed over the course of three decades.
- Paperback | 123 pages
- 140 x 216 x 10mm | 177g
- 30 Jan 2010
- David R. Godine Publisher
- Boston, MA, United States
About his poetry, Motion has observed: "I want my writing to be as clear as water. No ornate language; very few obvious tricks. I want readers to be able to see all the way down through its surfaces into the swamp. I want them to feel they're in a world they thought they knew, but which turns out to be stranger, more charged, more disturbed than they realised. In truth, creating this world is a more theatrical operation than the writing admits, and it's this discretion about strong feeling, and strong feeling itself, which keeps drawing me back to the writers I most admire: Wordsworth, Edward Thomas, Philip Larkin." Indeed, a significant and consistent feature of Motion's work, throughout his shifts in style and changes in imaginative topographies, is his signature clarity of observation, his unwillingness to sacrifice intelligibility or embrace opacity. Instead, Motion employs the full power of the English language to do his bidding, and, in love with words as he is, the words cooperate, communicate--transforming the intangible, the abstract into intelligible images, associations, and ultimately, knowledge. In his role as poet laureate for the past ten years, Motion has worked to make poetry more widely available to the general public free of charge (through his online archiving of poets reading their work at The Poetry Archive) and has tried to demystify verse, saying simply, "The best poems are those which speak to us about the important things in our lives in a way that we never forget. Any heavier definition than that begins to collapse under its own weight and exclude many forms of poetry." Motion's own lyrical poems, many written in formal meter and rhyme, speak to usclearly and memorably, meeting his own challenge with flying colors.