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All the essential poetry news from the month of November.

Bit late, sorry.


The author Joyce Carol Oates published a short story portraying Robert Frost as boorish and vainglorious, angering the late poet’s friends and family in the process. Read more at The GuardianThe American Conservative and The Washington Post.

Joyce Carol Oates [Source: Flickr Creative Commons © SpokaneFocus]

Joyce Carol Oates
[Source: Flickr Creative Commons © SpokaneFocus]

Michael Gove (UK Education Secretary) announced a shake-up of the GCSE curriculum, under which a greater emphasis will be placed on Romantic poetry. Read more at The IndependentThe Telegraph, and The Daily Mail.

Visualisations of characters from the poet Dylan Thomas’s play Under Milk Wood, painted by pop artist Peter Blake, have gone on display at Cardiff to mark the 100th anniversary of Thomas’s birth. Read more at National Museum WalesBBC News and The Telegraph.

CS Lewis was honoured with a memorial stone in Poet’s Corner at Westminster Abbey. Read more at BBC NewsCS Lewis in Poet’s Corner and The Telegraph.

University researchers have recreated John Donne’s 1622 Gunpowder Day sermon in virtual reality using acoustic and visual models. Listen and explore at The Virtual Paul’s Cross Project and read more at The Guardian and The Anglican News Service.

Quote from John Donne at North Greenwich [Source: Flickr Creative Commons © David Jones 大卫 琼斯]

Quote from John Donne at North Greenwich
[Source: Flickr Creative Commons © David Jones 大卫 琼斯]

In an interview with Esquire, George Clooney revealed that Russell Crowe sent him a book of poems to apologise after calling him a sell-out. Read more at Access HollywoodThe Wrap and NY Daily News.

A trailor was released for Tar, the independent movie about poet CK Williams which features James Franco and Mila Kunis. Read more and watch the trailor at IndieWireThe Wrap, and Cinema Blend.

Valerie Eliot, widow of the poet TS Eliot, auctioned her British art collection for more than £7m at Christies, with the highest price going to a pencil and water colour sketch by John Constable. Read more at Blouin Art InfoThe Times of India and The Huffington Post.


Mary Szybist‘s poetry collection Incarnadine won the US National Book Award for Poetry. View readings at National Book Foundation and read more at OPB and UVA Today.

Book Releases

Train Songs ed. Sean O’Brien and Don Paterson (1/5 based on 1 rating at GoodReads). Reviewed at The GuardianThe Independent and WriteOutLoud.

War Reporter by Dan O’Brien (4.6/5 based on 7 ratings at GoodReads). Reviewed at The Guardian and Sonofabook. Author interviewed at The Malahat Review.

Broken Hierarchies: Poems 1952-2012 by Geoffrey Hill (3/5 based on 1 rating at GoodReads). Reviewed at The Sunday Times and The Guardian.

Division Street by Helen Mort (4.3/5 based on 9 ratings at GoodReads). Reviewed at Mouth LondonThe Independent and The Hungry Reader. Author interviewed at The Oxonian Review.

Sleeping Keys by Jean Sprackland (4/5 based on 2 ratings at GoodReads). Reviewed at The Guardian, Tweet Speak and Poor Rude Lines.

(all ratings are from GoodReads as at 22/12/13).