Philip Larkin

Philip Larkin

They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had
And add some extra, just for you.

      This Be The Verse

Philip Larkin (1922-1985) English poet and novelist born in Coventry and educated in Oxford. His works include The Less Deceived (1955) and High Windows (1974), the latter reflecting the poet's increasing preoccupation with morbid themes. Larkin was also a noted jazz critic, and published a collection of jazz essays in All What Jazz: A Record Diary (1960-1968).

Selected Poems

Worthy Web Links

"It is part of his poems' strength to speak directly to most people who come across them. He makes each of us feel that he is 'our' poet, in a way that Eliot, for instance, does not - and each of us creates a highly personal version of his character to accompany his work. Pointing out that he was contradictory doesn't pose much of a threat to these versions. It's more disturbing, however, to say that many of Larkin's inner conflicts evolved in ways his work can only hint at. When he found his authentic voice in the late 1940s, the beautiful flowers of his poetry were already growing on long stalks out of pretty dismal ground.... He understood that the relationship he had created between 'high' art and 'ordinary' existence was a remarkable one, which deserved to be made public."

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Poetry for the Masses

ArtemisWorks 1997