Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Enjoying 'The Poetry of Geoffrey Hill'

The way Henry Hart has put it, and the introduction by Donald Hall, the Southern Illinois University Press publication is a must read for poetry enthusiasts.

I, especially, like the part on journeys, meditations, and elegies.

The other parts are also true, especially on poets. The poet has their own battles, within and without, and strives to meet demands of a tradition, no matter obscure.

Normally, the poet finds that issues to do with power- the use and abuse of it- surfaces one way or the other, and that, somehow somewhere, they have to deal with it. This (power) issue naturally escapes into the question of authority- issues well captured in Continuities, The Poetry of Poesis, The Nightmare of History, Doctor Faustus and the Poetry Banquet, 'Funeral Music', and "The Songbook of Sebastian Arrurruz".

Life without rituals is colourless, and this is the logical discussion of such issues as "The Pentecost Castle". The Journey to Love, Love, Death, and the Mystical Marriage, Rituals of Meditation, among others.

To know the poetryof Geoffrey Hill, simply put, is to see ourselves.

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