The Stairwell (Paperback)
  • The Stairwell (Paperback)
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The Stairwell (Paperback)

(author)
£10.00
Paperback 80 Pages / Published: 14/08/2014
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Winner of the 2015 Griffin Poetry Prize Shortlisted for the 2014 T.S. Eliot Prize In The Stairwell, his tenth collection, Michael Longley's themes and forms reach a new intensity. The second part of the book is a powerful sequence of elegies for his twin brother, Peter, and the dominant mood elsewhere is elegiac. The title poem begins: `I have been thinking about the music for my funeral ...' The two parts are also linked by Homer. Longley is well-known for his Homeric versions, and the Iliad is a presiding presence - both in poems about the Great War and in the range of imagery that gives his twin's death a mythic dimension. Yet funeral music can be life-affirming. Longley has built this collection on intricate doublings, not only when he explores the tensions of twinship. The psychologically suggestive word `stairwell' is itself an ambiguous compound. These poems encompass birth as well as death, childhood and age, nature and art, the animal and human worlds, tenderness and violence, battlefield and `homeland'. The Stairwell is a richly textured, immensely moving work. Michael Longley has the rare ability to fuse emotional depth with complicated artistry: to make them, somehow, the same thing.

Publisher: Vintage Publishing
ISBN: 9780224101684
Number of pages: 80
Weight: 118 g
Dimensions: 198 x 130 x 7 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
"It is...the warmth in Longley's writing that marks his poems out, makes them cherishable. Never forced, that affection is simply there." -- Kate Kellaway * Observer *
"Longley's 10th collection weaves his classical themes of war, family and flaura and fauna into measured songs of commemoration for those he has loved." -- Paul McCartney * Sunday Times *
"A book of tiny, delicately lyrical commemorations and commendations." * Tablet *
"The Stairwell...is a stupendous collection of quiet beauty and universal significance." -- Bel Mooney * Daily Mail *
"The book I have loved best, and have gone back to again and again." -- Adam Nicolson * Evening Standard *

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