In her tragically short life, Charlotte Mew produced poetry that was intense, emotional, original, and praised by her contemporaries Dylan Thomas, Ezra Pound, Thomas Hardy, and Virginia Woolf. Gathered together by Ireland's most distinguished modern female poet, this collection includes a diverse range of her work, dealing with pain, love, and feminist themes....
|Title||:||Selected Poems: Charlotte Mew|
|Number of Pages||:||124 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Selected Poems: Charlotte Mew Reviews
Aw, I feel it's very hard for me to pass on my love for Charlotte Mew because I get so ridiculous about her work. My admiration for her is just this kind of ceaselessly multiplying wave of softheartedness and solitary sadness and pure fangirl flailing which assaults my soul whenever I read her poems.Favourite bits (oh, I am so sentimental, I like the sweetest / softest / sincerest poems not the most clever ones):Red is the strangest pain to bear;In Spring the leaves on the budding trees;In Summer the roses are worse than these,More terrible than they are sweet:A rose can stab you across the streetDeeper than any knife;And the crimson haunts you everywhere - Thin shafts of sunlight like the ghosts reddened swords have stuck our stairAs if, coming down, you had split your life. from 'The Quiet House'But first I want your life: - before I die I want to seeThe world that lies behind the strangeness of your eyesThere is nothing gay or green there for my gathering, it may be,Yet on brown fields there liesA haunting purple bloom: is there not something in grey skiesAnd in grey sea?I want what world there is behind your eyes,I want your life and you will not give it me. from 'On the Road to the Sea' (which in its entity is probably my favourite poem in the book)My heart is lame with running after yours so fastSuch a long way,Shall we walk slowly home, looking at all the things we passedPerhaps to-day?Home down the quiet evening roads under the quiet skies,Not saying much,Yo for a moment giving me your eyesWhen you could bear my touch.But not to-morrow. This has taken all my breath;Then, though you look the same,There may be something lovelier in Love's face in deathAs your heart sees it, running back the way we came;My heart is lame.''My Heart is Lame'
I gave it a chancepoetry isn't my thingreading or writing.
“I remember rooms that have had their part In the steady slowing down of the heart.”This quote from “Rooms” reads almost like an epitaph.With Charlotte Mew we are in the period between the Victorians and the Moderns, and into one of my favorites periods in English literature. This period (so they say) betrayed the exhaustion of the Romantic impetus and required a revolution in poetry. The proposition is flawed on several counts, but that is another subject . I only note that the period included along with Charlotte Mew, the 1890’s Yeats, John Masefield, Ernest Dowson, the early Frost, A. E. Housman, Thomas Hardy and Francis Thompson. This is not the place to express my feeling that the modernist bulldozers came and uprooted all the trees and flowers, pushing enchanting poets like Charlotte Mew far into the background so that they are hardly known now; nor to argue that, considering how little place poetry has in our current culture, the modernists obliterated not only their predecessors from our consciousness, but, in the final analysis, themselves as well. I only want to be one more to call attention to this neglected poet, and to quote a few of her poems is all I can really contribute. “I Have Been Through the Gates” “His heart to me, was a place of palaces and pinnacles and shining towers; I saw it then as we see things in dreams,--I do not remember how long I slept; I remember the trees, and the high, white walls, and how the sun was always on the towers; The walls are standing to-day, and the gates; I have been through the gates, I have groped, I have crept Back, back. There is dust in the streets, and blood; they are empty; darkness is over them; His heart is a place with the lights gone out, forsaken by great winds and the heavenly rain, unclean and unswept, Like the heart of the holy city, old blind, beautiful Jerusalem; Over which Christ wept “Here Mew uses certain Modernist techniques (she seems ahead of her time): an a-logical movement from image to image, a lack of coherent narrative or dialectic, and an expansion of the English prosody; however, the techniques are put to much better use dialectic than is generally the case. The reader “feels along” with the poem, though the intellect may lag behind (and maybe never catch up). She used such techniques in other poems. How much of her technique did T. S Eliot copy? He cribbed from pretty much everyone else, why not her? “In the Fields” Lord when I look at lovely things which pass, Under old trees the shadow of young leaves Dancing to please the wind along the grass, Or the gold stillness of the August sun on the August sheaves; Can I believe there is a heavenlier world than this? And if there is Will the heart of any everlasting thing Bring me these dreams that take my breath away? They come at evening with the home-flying rooks and the scent of hay, Over the fields. They come in spring. Can I believe there is a lovelier lyric than this? I suppose, but one must look far and wide. “May 1916” “Let us remember Spring will come again To the scorched, blackened woods, where all the wounded trees Wait, with their old wise patience for the heavenly rain, Sure of the sky: sure of the sea to send its healing breeze, Sure of the sun. And even as to these Surely the Spring, when God shall please Will come again like a divine surprise To those who sit to-day with their great Dead, hands in their hands, eyes in their eyes, At one with Love, at one with Grief: blind to the scattered things and changing skies.”In looking a little more closely at Charlotte Mew for the writing of this review, I have noticed two things: 1) she is a more accomplished poet than I had realized - her emotional tentacles extend deep and wide, her perspective on a given topic is nuanced and many sided; nearly every poem she wrote in worthy of attention, and 2) though she is little known, virtually everyone who cares for her is, as I am, astonished that she is not better known. She deserves much more attention than she has received. Why is every high school student exposed to William Carlos Williams’ red wheelbarrow poem and the one about the plums in the fridge, but are never exposed to those above by Charlotte Mew? It is a condemnation of our educational system and indeed of our culture (should further evidence be needed).There ought to have been a place for Charlotte Mew in this world, but there wasn’t; though she wrote such beautiful verse, she was poor, a lesbian, eccentric in dress and manner, haunted by the insanity which ran in her family and rebuffed in love. She died of suicide while languishing prematurely in a nursing home. “I remember rooms that have had their part In the steady slowing down of the heart.”
Mew is a wonderfully talented poet and was noted for her talents by several of her famous contemporaries such as Thomas Hardy, May Sinclair and Virginia Woolf. Sadly, she is now all but forgotten. I believe her work is still worth reading and analysing in the current era for themes such as social exclusion, female oppression, relgion and so on.
I had to skip most of the introduction, it was so wordy and pretentious and badly written, but I bought the book for the poems and they're brilliant. I was somewhat familiar with Charlotte Mew through coming across 'The Changeling' and 'The Farmer's Bride' in the course of my life. Both of those poems are here, as one would expect, and I found the rest of the selection to be just as atmospheric, emotional and cleverly written.
I very much enjoyed this collection of Charlotte Mew poems... it had all of my favorites and others that I had not yet read. Overall a good collection, with an excellent introduction by Eavan Boland.
I do tend to just re-read one poem obsessively, but the rest of her stuff is marvelous too :)
Her poems make me feel warm and fuzzy. Road of the Sea is my favorite so sincere, soft and sweet. Reminds me that poems don't have to flashy to be good.
A collection of undoubtedly beautiful and thought-provoking poems. I'm very interested in Mew's life too, so I will now be researching that, and will be looking for connections within her poetry.