The North Ship

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Faber, 1966 - Poetry - 48 pages
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The North Ship, a book of poems, Philip Larkin's earliest volume of verse, was first published in August 1945. The introduction, by Larkin himself, explains the circumstances of its publication and the influences which shaped its contents.

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Contents

Dawn
15
Conscript
16
Kick up the fire
17
The horns of the morning
18
Winter
19
K Climbing the hill within the deafening wind
21
Within the dream you said
22
NightMusic
23
Ugly Sister
31
I see a girl dragged by the wrists
32
I dreamed of an outthrust arm of land
34
One man walking a deserted platform
35
If hands could free you heart page
36
do not let it be
37
Morning has spread again
38
This is the first thing
39

Like the trains beat
24
I put my mouth
25
Nursery Tale
26
The Dancer
27
The bottle is drunk out by one
28
To write one song I said
29
If grief could burn out
30
Heaviest of flowers the head
40
Is it for now or for always
41
Pour away that youth
42
So through that unripe day you bore your head
43
The North Ship
44
Waiting for breakfast while she brushed her hair
48
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About the author (1966)

Philip Larkin was a British poet, novelist, critic, and essayist. Born in 1922 in Coventry, England, he graduated from St. John's College, Oxford, in 1940 and then pursued a career as a librarian, becoming the librarian at the University of Hull in 1955. Although he led a retiring life and published infrequently, producing only one volume of poetry approximately every 10 years, Larkin was still considered one of the preeminent contemporary British poets. He is often associated with the "Movement," a 1950s literary group that, through the use of colloquial language and common, everyday subjects, endeavored to create poetry that would appeal to the common reader. However, this association came about mainly because Larkin's poem "Church Going," for which he first gained critical attention, was published in New Lines, an anthology of the "Movement" poets. In reality, his work, particularly his later poems, is not typical of the group. Larkin's published a total of only four volumes of poetry: The North Ship (1945), The Less Deceived (1955), The Whitsun Weddings (1964), and High Windows (1974). He also wrote two novels, Jill and A Girl in Winter, and published two volumes of prose, Required Writing and All That Jazz, a collection of his reviews of jazz records. Philip Larkin died in 1985.

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