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  #21  
Unread 04-04-2021, 02:08 PM
W T Clark W T Clark is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark McDonnell View Post
I don't think you've read Larkin, Cameron. Not really.

Mark, your comment is a little unbeatable isn't it? Basically, if I read him deeply enough I will become appreciative; my commentary stems from a lack of deep enough reading.
I've read him repeatedly and in depth (from what I can tell. I am not stating my opinion as universal fact; it is only my opinion). And sorry, but he feels like a period piece. Luckily enough, though I can feel his influence in Duffy and Owen Sheers and other (mostly white) proto-Movementeers, newer greater writers like Vahni Capildeo are taking over. I honestly believe that Capildeo has done more for uk poetry than Larkin. Sorry again.
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  #22  
Unread 04-04-2021, 02:12 PM
W T Clark W T Clark is offline
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Nah. Some people despise him, for various obvious reasons, but boring
is not a word that applies. I get that some people might try and put the
boot in every now and again, but heís Teflon. Things just slide off without
sticking. Thatís how I know how good he is/was. Betjeman said he was the
John Clare of the council estates, which I think is about right.

We'll have to agree to disagree then. I'm not sure everything slides off, though. The contemporary scene has more modernism in it than Larkin.
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  #23  
Unread 04-04-2021, 02:28 PM
Mark McDonnell Mark McDonnell is offline
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It was specifically your description of him as "no nonsense, stiff-upper-lip" poetry that led to my observation, Cameron. It seemed a very one dimensional reading based more on his appearance and public persona than his actual poems.
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  #24  
Unread 04-04-2021, 02:31 PM
conny conny is offline
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Thing is, in a few years when this particular modernism is long gone, and changed into some other kind of modernism, I suspect Larkin will still be there..
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  #25  
Unread 04-04-2021, 02:37 PM
James Brancheau James Brancheau is offline
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I suspect that too. Larkin is not only a very fine poet, but quintessentially English. His voice resonates with me.
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  #26  
Unread 04-04-2021, 02:46 PM
W T Clark W T Clark is offline
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Originally Posted by James Brancheau View Post
I suspect that too. Larkin is not only a very fine poet, but quintessentially English. His voice resonates with me.

How is Larkin quintessentially English? And how can you blanket term Englishness in such a way? It all seems rather reductive; but then again, so is Larkin's aesthetic.
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  #27  
Unread 04-04-2021, 02:47 PM
Mark McDonnell Mark McDonnell is offline
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And I think we have a different view of poetry, Cameron. I'm not really interested in whether a particular poet has "done more" for poetry or has "set it back" as though it's a project with a defined forward trajectory to some ideal destination. When I read Larkin, I read someone filled with compassion, desperation, self-loathing, cynicism, yearning, wit, pettiness, insight, wonder. Messy humanity in other words. That, and unsurpassed poetic skill.
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  #28  
Unread 04-04-2021, 02:49 PM
W T Clark W T Clark is offline
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I suspect we will forget about Larkin like we forgot about Kingsley Amis. The view of language we take now, as something corrupted by history and power, and therefore multiform and not completely obedient, is more in line with any form of modernism, than the Movement.
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  #29  
Unread 04-04-2021, 02:53 PM
W T Clark W T Clark is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark McDonnell View Post
And I think we have a different view of poetry, Cameron. I'm not really interested in whether a particular poet has "done more" for poetry or has "set it back" as though it's a project with a defined forward trajectory to some ideal destination. When I read Larkin, I read someone filled with compassion, desperation, self-loathing, cynicism, yearning, wit, pettiness, insight, wonder. Messy humanity in other words. That, and unsurpassed poetic skill.

Mark, I don't read poetry as a project, though I do believe that Larkin set back English poetic expression. I read it for language; language made new. That's all.
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  #30  
Unread 04-04-2021, 02:53 PM
conny conny is offline
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Thankfully Larkin didnít have much time for words like reductive. And yes, he is
quintessentially English, no question. Though exactly what that Englishness consists of is moot, to put it mildly.
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