Download Robert Graves: The Lasting Poetic Achievement by D. N. G. Carter PDF

By D. N. G. Carter

An try to offer a thematic remedy of Graves' poems. The research perspectives Graves as having suffered by the hands of destiny that's built-in into his poetry and the writer goals to supply a brand new interpreting of the poems, usually opposite to approved wisdom.

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In these last two respects, which are fundamental to his sense of 46 Robert Graves: The Lasting Achievement poetic responsibility, Graves's poems resist all 'foreign accent or colouring', particularly from the United States. But I have suggested that Graves is more accurate than he thinks, and this in relation to the positive part of his assertion, concerning the'Anglo -Irish poetic tradition' . Graves was by no means always so eager to claim his Irish connection, though proud of individual members of a family that on his father's side had been settled in Ireland since the time of Cromwell.

To study himself, therefore, is at the same time to study his art, so that his own physical awkwardness, for example, which he might find personally disconcerting, suddenly acquires a value as a metaphor. The poem 'Flying Crooked' instructs us how the author of 'Nature's Lineaments' can yet get nature to serve his own turn - and poetry's: The butterfly, a cabbage-white, (His honest idiocy of flight) Will never now, it is too late, Master the art of flying straight, Yet has - who knows so well as I?

F So Graves refuses to live in England, but remains unmistakably English in his allegiance to a lost ideal. Hence the Gravesian hauteur, the distinguishing air of noli me tangere, the faintly anachronistic sense of belonging and yet not belonging. It is not surprising after all, perhaps, that Graves should recall his AngloIrish origins, for these are quintessentially Anglo-Irish characteristics . Graves's relation to Ireland, however, while he adverted fondly to it in his old age, was utterly marginal during his more active years; and the Anglo-Irishness itself, while it serves to illustrate Graves's sense of himself as one of the last of his kind, was nothing to sustain him.

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