W.H. Auden

‘The birds of paradise sing without a needing a supple branch’: Joseph Brodsky and the Poetics of Exile

During his lifetime, Joseph Brodsky – political prisoner, exile, Nobel Prize winner – was virtually unknown in his native, Soviet-era Russia. Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, in the early 1990s Brodsky’s poetry became officially available to the public for the first time in the country, which had hitherto so furiously rejected him. By then already an established poet and essayist in the West, his quick (albeit posthumous) homecoming fame shortly followed, positioning Brodsky firmly in the minds of first-time Russian readers as a political martyr, poet-iconoclast and a major symbol of the Russian dissident literary world.

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Love in Contemporary American Gay Male Poetry in the Works of Richard Siken, Eduardo C Corral and Jericho Brown

Gay poets, in the main, are determined to claim difference by questioning orthodoxies that corral issues about sexuality and love − and the functioning of these constructs within an urban, heterosexist reality − issues always pertinent to gay male writers because it is they who must bear the burden of political self-consciousness in a heterosexist world.

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Dead Man Modified: A Letter from Vienna

Stefan Zweig and Joseph Roth, 1936. Imagno/Hulton Archive/Getty Images The words of a dead man Are modified in the guts of the living. W.H. Auden, in Memory of W.B. Yeats Just around the block from Vienna’s State Opera, on the …

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Poetry as Extorreor Monolothe: Finnegans Wake on Bakhtin

I was out drunk with friends one night in Perth, Western Australia. My father had just died. We were walking home, so to speak, and our path took us past the Church of Christ. At that, I launched myself at the wall of the church, found a toehold and lunged up into the air. I grasped the ‘t’ decal and with all my weight managed to prise it from the wall. The Church of Chris looked down upon us all. I continued on my way home, or rather to here, but not without the occasional somewhat gratified memory of the incident. I cannot help thinking of the sudden appearance of the Church of Chris as a sort of revelation, with something to say about the truth of something. That is what reading Finnegans Wake is like.

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