The Bees

The BeesA Winner Of The Costa Book Award The Bees Is Carol Ann Duffy S First Collection Of New Poems As British Poet Laureate, And The Much Anticipated Successor To The T S Eliot Prize Winning Rapture After The Intimate Focus Of The Earlier Book, The Bees Finds Duffy Using Her Full Poetic Range There Are Drinking Songs, Love Poems, Poems To The Weather, And Poems Of Political Anger There Are Elegies, Too, For Beloved Friends And Most Movingly For The Poet S Mother As Duffy S Voice Rises In This Collection, Her Music Intensifies, And Every Poem Patterns Itself Into Song Woven Into And Weaving Through The Book Is Its Presiding Spirit The Bee Sometimes The Bee Is Duffy S Subject, Sometimes It Strays Into The Poem Or Hovers At Its Edge And The Reader Soon Begins To Anticipate Its Appearance In The End, Duffy S Point Is Clear The Bee Symbolizes What We Have Left Of Grace In The World, And What Is Most Precious And Necessary For Us To Protect The Bees Is Duffy S Clearest Affirmation Yet Of Her Belief In The Poem As Secular Prayer, As The Means By Which We Remind Ourselves Of What Is Most Worthy Of Our Attention And Concern, Our Passion And Our Praise. Emily Dickinson understood the importance of bees She begins a poem To make a prairie it takes a clover, and one bee Another poem venerates the bee as part of a numinous trinity In the name of the Bee And of the the Butterfly And of the Breeze Amen Dickinson thought bees lived irresponsible and adventurous lives.Carol Ann Duffy also understands the importance of bees, but the cover notes of this emotion laden volume tells us that for her they carry all the grace of the world Bees do have roles in the poems here sometimes they dart through a poem like a thought and sometimes, as in poems specifically about bees, they have a heavy, lumbering presence However, most of the poems are not about bees, unless they also have a hand in love and death, Duffy s 2 great subjects Homage is paid to people lost to the poet, her swollen heart turned over to the reader In fact, my favorite of the collection is called The Dead The love poems also expose her As always, they voice the hook in one s perception of the world, though she is careful to write, nothing and no one is wrong I consider myself fortunate to have come across Carol Ann Duffy a number of years ago and tagged her as so
This surprised me I think I expected bland but it isn t And what is one supposed to expect from a Poet Laureate who embodies so many firsts I find it witty, clever and feminine which I am sure I am not meant to see but well, she is a woman Beautiful language choices and actual rhythm it spoke of England though she isn t English.I particularly liked Premonitions , having spent a lot of years caring for the dying and their intimates I liked echoes of other poets, especially the last line of Passing Bells The old, familiar, clanking cow bells of the cattle And also Ariel.there were many referenced Shakespeare lines.On political themes, Big Ask repeated my anger, my disgust at the li
I listened to this on audiobook via my local library s service I m always looking for new poetry to read, so when I saw The Bees, I decided to give Carol s writing a try Don t be fooled by the title, there s a diverse range of topics included in the collection such as recollections of WW1 Carol narrated herself, which for
I have heard of Carol Ann Duffy, as Poet Laureate she is probably the highest profile poet in the UK at the moment But until now have never read a single poem of hers, so was looking forward to this.The Bees is not a collection of poems just about the small insect, but the bee features in some of the poems or merely brushes by the poem Her subjects are diverse in this collection, from the First World war to Oxfam
This book has been on my book radar or bookdar for a while now and for a couple of reasons, it is about Bees which are awesome and it is by a Poet Laureate I haven t read yet I saw this for sale and it s cover really catches your eye so had to buy it Not all the poems are about bees, at first I thought that was a bit of a cop out but soon realised a book of poems on one subject would be pretty dull, instead Carol Ann Duffy has weaved in a number of bee related poems in with her other writings.The book has been split into four sections, I m not sure if this is correct or not but they feel a bit like seasons.but I could be way off with that The non bee poems were really good, far political that I was expecting, her opinions on war and the destruction of rainforest will probably have rubbed some people the wrong way and because of that they stand out .The three highl
bees are the batteries of orchards, gardens, guard them. I was lucky enough to hear Carol Ann Duffy do a reading of her works at the Sydney Writers Festival last year She read out several poems from this collection The Bees I cannot even describe the awe I was in at hearing her words Not only is Duffy an immensely talented poet, the way she reads her work is amazing Her annunciation, emphasis on words, rhythm, beat, and even hand gestures take her work to another level There is a reason she is the Poet Laureate She is genius Naturally, I was immediately drawn to pick up this collection It covers a wide range of topics including war, death, love, nature and politics Of course, there is a recurring motif of bees As with all of Duffy s work, this was a pleasure to read and left me stunned at her raw tale
I found this collection a bit of a bumpy ride if I m honest References to bees are not surprisingly dispersed through the book and there is a poem The Bees which opens the collection and in a way that poem summed up my overall impression of the whole collection.There are moments here that I thought were absolutely magnificent I ve little to no technical understanding, but it seems to me that when she is on her game, Carol Ann Duffy is an absolute master of her craft The poem The Bees felt like a short introduction to the buzzing words to come and to the way the words had almost been drawn nectar like from somewhere within the poet s soul to be transported to the page And there s a real feel of the hither and thither about those first two verses they crackle with energy and vitality What I loved about them was the way they appeared almost like random buzz words and phrases on first read but on subsequent reads they feel like there s a purpose and structure and destination to all their movement and twists and activity It was a great start but the third and final verse somehow meandered and ran out of steam a bit and that feeling pervaded throughout the collection for me The last line of the poem The Bees in particular just left me feeling a bit flat and let down
4.5 starsThe Bees in this collection by Carol Ann Duffy might settle in for a whole poem or make only brief cameos in a single line or phrase and go Other motifs include politics, myth, love, war, death, and nature, plus two touching elegies to the poet s late mother As British Poet Laureate Duffy has also created several poems that are quintessentially British and filled with English elms, ale and barley, county names, and even a few notable citizens Luke Howard, Namer of Clouds Yet what unites this collection are consistent if somewhat capricious visits from the bees Of the various seasons in which they appear, for some reason winter resonates most with me From Snow Then all the dead opened their cold palmsand released the snow slow, slant, silenta huge unsaying, it fell, torn language, settled the world to be locked, local unseen,fervent earthbound bees around a queen.The river grimaced and was ice It would be hard to choose a favorite poem from this group, but I especially enjoyed Duffy s treatment of nature and animals And not only her sacred bees but how all creatures carry with them a certain dignit
A bit of a mixed bag but overall quite good Best read aloud. Good, but not good enoughThe trouble with being a poet laureate is being a poet laureate you have to be representative of all the race, meaning both of your country and of its tribe of poets But if you must speak for the nation, how can you speak for yourself I think that Carol Anne Duffy s poetry collection The Bees must be interpreted in this context The task facing any established mainstream English language poetry today and that is the type of poetry I should be understood to be talking about in the rest of this review is to juggle 1 mandatory social and political attitudes with 2 a mastery of the accepted creating writing program techniques for writing verse and 3 a style sufficiently different from everyone else s that reviewers or the ones that count, basically meaning other college teachers will be able to find something to say about it If you manage to pull this off, your efforts will be crowned with the successes of publication in the right places, workshop and faculty appointments, creative writing grants, and literary prizes, even up to laureateships, Pulitzers, and Nobels.But uneasy lies the head that wears a literary crown, and this collection evinces the unease which comes from what must be a very weighty c

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  • Hardcover
  • 96 pages
  • The Bees
  • Carol Ann Duffy
  • English
  • 19 March 2019
  • 9780865478855