Come Hither

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ISBN 9780571250530 Format Paperback
9780571250530
Paperback
Published 19/03/2009 Length 864 pages
864

About Book

'The most compelling of anthologies, the most leisurely, and the most complete.' Observer

First published in 1923, the conception of de la Mare's collection of poetry and prose 'for the young of all ages' had been in the poet's mind for some time. He wanted it to transcend the ordinary anthology, to have real unity and to be a true introduction to poetry. The result was, in its time, a completely original book, personal and creative - pervaded by his own company throughout.

Come Hither takes its unity from de la Mare's introduction, an allegorical prose fable, the subtle and playful references of which are echoed throughout the proceeding collection. The anthology's ecstatic variety, where 'unofficial poetry', such as counting-out rhymes, appear on equal terms alongside Keats's Odes, suggests a relation between childhood and poetry that is at once serious and radiantly spontaneous. Together with the children's literature aspect, it also provides a selection of the leading Georgian poets and is arguably the best account of their 'hinterland', documenting their prevailing thematic concerns alongside a selection of their predecessors.

'The most compelling of anthologies, the most leisurely, and the most complete.' ObserverFirst published in 1923, the conception of de la Mare's collection of poetry and prose 'for the young of all ages' had been in the poet's mind for some time. He wanted it to transcend the ordinary anthology, to have real unity and to be a true introduction to poetry. The result was, in its time, a completely original book, personal and creative - pervaded by his own company throughout.Come Hither takes its unity from de la Mare's introduction, an allegorical prose fable, the subtle and playful references of which are echoed throughout the proceeding collection. The anthology's ecstatic variety, where 'unofficial poetry', such as counting-out rhymes, appear on equal terms alongside Keats's Odes, suggests a relation between childhood and poetry that is at once serious and radiantly spontaneous. Together with the children's literature aspect, it also provides a selection of the leading Georgian poets and is arguably the best account of their 'hinterland', documenting their prevailing thematic concerns alongside a selection of their predecessors.
  • About Walter de la Mare

    Walter de la Mare (1873–1956) was born in Charlton, Kent. From 1890 to 1908, he worked in the statistics department of the London office of Anglo-American Oil. For the rest of his long life, he was a full-time writer. De la Mare’s first collection of poetry, Songs of Childhood, was published under pseudonym in 1902. With the publication of The Listeners (1912) and the classic volume of children’s poetry Peacock Pie (1913), he established himself as one of the leading poets of the time. In addition to publishing more than a thousand poems, culminating with The Traveller (1945) and Winged Chariot (1951), considered by many – among them T. S. Eliot, his editor at Faber – to be his finest poems, de la Mare published novels, including Memoirs of a Midget (1921), short stories, drama, stories for children and literary criticism. He also edited celebrated anthologies, including Come Hither (1923) and Behold This Dreamer (1939). Walter de la Mare received the Order of Merit in 1953.

    Photo Credit: Mark Gerson

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