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Documenting the quest to track down everything written by (and written about) the poet, translator, critic, and radio dramatist, Henry Reed.

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I Capture the Castle: A girl and her family struggle to make ends meet in an old English castle.
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«  Points from Letters (1 of 9)  »

Reeding Lessons: the Henry Reed research blog

19.11.2017


Points from Letters (1 of 9)

[The following is a letter to the editor, in response to Henry Reed's article, "Poetry in War Time: The Older Poets," which appeared in The Listener on January 18, 1945. Reed's two-part series on the poets working during the period 1939-1944 led to a lively exchange of letters debating the merits of modern poetry, with particular regard to a comparison of the poets of the Second World War and those of the first, Great War. Over the next week, we will reproduce the exchange of letters, here. We begin with the poet and editor, Geoffrey Grigson.]

The Listener, 25 January, 1945. Vol. XXXIII, No. 837. (p. 104) [.pdf]
Poetry in War Time
Writing of 'Poetry in War Time' Mr. Henry Reed says, and says only of Mr. W.H. Auden, that 'Two volumes by Auden have appeared, but they consist mainly of pre-war work'.

In America, in 1944, Mr. Auden's book For the Time Being was published. I daresay few copies have arrived over here; but when Mr. Reed does get hold of one, and does digest Mr. Auden's long commentary on 'The Tempest' which is called 'The Sea and the Mirror', he may overhaul his opinion about who 'has made the greatest contribution to poetry in the last five years'. In my judgment 'The Sea and the Mirror' secures Mr. Auden in the place many of us know him to occupy—as the most inquisitive, moving, serious, the best and most diversely equipped poet now writing in English.

Keynsham
Geoffrey Grigson


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What is Henry Reed's first name?

1513. Hodge, Alan. "Thunder on the Right." Tribune (London), 14 June 1946, 15.
Hodge finds 'dry charm as well as quiet wit' in "Judging Distances," but overall feels Reed is 'diffuse and not sufficiently accomplished.'



1st lesson:

Reed, Henry (1914-1986). Born: Birmingham, England, 22 February 1914; died: London, 8 December 1986.

Education: MA, University of Birmingham, 1936. Served: RAOC, 1941-42; Foreign Office, Bletchley Park, 1942-1945. Freelance writer: BBC Features Department, 1945-1980.

Author of: A Map of Verona: Poems (1946)
The Novel Since 1939 (1946)
Moby Dick: A Play for Radio from Herman Melville's Novel (1947)
Lessons of the War (1970)
Hilda Tablet and Others: Four Pieces for Radio (1971)
The Streets of Pompeii and Other Plays for Radio (1971)
Collected Poems (1991, 2007)
The Auction Sale (2006)


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