The Men Around Her Bed
In The Men Around Her Bed, Alan Brownjohn writes about experiences from childhood (the memory of hearing Neville Chamberlain’s 1939 declaration of war) on into the present, sometimes in precisely dated poems. He is perennially concerned with the impact of momentous events and changes on day-to-day life; his acute sense of detail recently earned him the soubriquet, in the TLS, of ‘the doyen of the diurnal’. In this new collection, he juxtaposes religious belief and unbelief, transmutes quirky social observation into poetry, indulges jokes and fantasies, and praises – or commemorates – friends. The poem which provides the title of the collection is an unconventional and mysterious celebration of his life; for which, in the words of Sean O’Brien, his poetry shows ‘an undiminished appetite’.
A powerful range and depth.
A completely assured master of whatever form he adopts.
Regular forms and tones flow as if naturally
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