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Oxford University Press is a department of the University of Oxford. It furthers the University's objective of excellence in research, scholarship, and education by publishing worldwide.

Price: $24.95

Format:
Paperback 96 pp.
5.5" x 8.5"

ISBN-10:
0195403797

ISBN-13:
9780195403794

Publication date:
November 1981

Imprint: OUP Canada

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Poems Twice Told

The Boatman and Welcoming Disaster

Jay MacPherson

This volume brings together two collections - one well known but unavailable for some time, the other little known - by a distinguished Canadian poet. The Boatman, first published in 1957, was one of the outstanding poetry collections of the 1950s and the winner of a Governor General's Award. It is an intricate sequence of short epigrammatic poems - in which there are echoes of ballads, carols, nursery rhymes, and hymns - that bear a whole cosmos of the poet's invention, constructed from Biblical and classical allusions. Welcoming Disaster was privately published in 1974 and will now reach the wider audience it deserves. Reviewing it in Poetry (January 1976), David Bromwich referred to Jay Macpherson's 'grandness' and 'verve', and wrote: 'She will put readers in mind of Graves and Wordsworth, of Auden and Dickinson and Stevie Smith, of every poet who ever wrote truly about innocence and its unlucky master, love.'

THE BOATMAN No Man's Nightingale
I.. POOR CHILD
Ordinary People in the Last Days
Poor Child
The Thread
The Third Eye
Cold Stone
In Time of Pestilence
She
True North
The Blighted Spring
The Ill Wind
II.. O EARTH RETURNS
Eve in Reflection
Sibylla
Eurynome
The Rymer
Love in Egypt
Sheba
The Marriage of Earth and Heaven
The Swan
The Day-Labourer
III.. THE PLOWMAN IN DARKNESS
Take not that Spirit...
Sibylla
The Rymer
Mary of Egypt
The Ark
Hail Wedded Love!
Isis
O Fenix Culpa
The Plowman in Darkness
While Philomel's unmeasured grief
IV.. THE SLEEPERS
The Garden of the Fall
The Sleeping Shepherd
The Lunatic Shepherd
The Wounded Shepherd
The Martyrs
The Garden of the Sexes
Aiaia
The Unicorn-Tree
The Old Enchanter
The Land of Nod
The Faithful Shepherd
The Secret Sleeper
The Caverned Woman
Helen
Psyche
The Innocents
The Natural Mother
The Nurse
V.. THE BOATMAN
The Boatman
1.. THE ARK
Ark to Noah
Ark Articulate
Ark Anatomical
Ark Artefact
Ark Apprehensive
Ark Astonished
Ark Overwhelmed
Ark Parting
2.. THE ISLAND
The Creature Essential
The Island
The Inward Angel
Inland
Leviathan
The Anagogic Man
VI.. THE FISHERMAN
Go take the world...
Storm
Sun and Moon
Whale
Coral
Mermaid
Lung-fish
Egg
Mandrake
Phoenix
Abominable Snowman
Book
Retina
Reader
The Fisherman
OTHER POEMS
A Winter
Like Adamant
The Beauty of Job's Daughters
Of Creatures the Net
A Garden Shut
PRETTY OPHELIA!
The Woods No More
A World of Glass
Girl With Buck Teeth
Very Sad Song
The Gardeners
A Mermaid's Grave
Tobit Casting
The Traveller
The Death-Angel
The Love-Song of Jenny Lear
Love Song II of Jenny Lear
WELCOMING DISASTER
I.. INVOCATIONS
Poets & Muses
Lost Books & Dead Letters
Hampstead Ponds
The Oracle Declines
'Still Waiting for the Spark from Heaven'
House Lights
Movie-Going
Conjuring the Dead
Absence, Havoc
Substitutions
II.. THE WAY DOWN
A Joint Epistle
First & Last Things
Some Ghosts & Some Ghouls
Lady Haunts Ghosts
Words Failing
Transaction
Justice
Masters and Servants
A Lost Soul
Complicities
Favourite Story
Palladia and Others
Hecate Trivia
Scamander
After the Explosion
III.. THE DARK SIDE
Karloff Poem
In That Cellar
The Well
Orion
They Return
IV.. RECOGNITIONS
Discovery
Surrogate
Messenger
Gathering In
Transformation
V.. SHADOWS FLEE
Umbrella Poem
What Falada Said
Visiting
Set-Ups
Playing
EPILOGUE
Old Age of the Teddy-Bear
The End
Notes and Acknowledgements

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