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Selected Poems

Selected Poems

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Frank O'Hara (1926-66) is among the most delightful and radical poets of the twentieth century. He is celebrated for his apparently unpremeditated poems, autobiographical and immediate ('any time, any place'). This is not the whole O'Hara: he may have scribbled poems on serviettes, but others he worked on with intense concentration, creating sequences that are inexhaustibly nuanced, full of surprise, heartbreak and laughter. There are analogies between his work and that of the painters he championed, Pollock, Kline and de Kooning among them. He is resolutely metropolitan, and his metropolis is New York City. He brilliantly captured the pace and rhythms, quandaries and exhilarations, of its mid-twentieth-century life.

Fiction & PoetryPoetryPoetry by individual poets Publisher: Carcanet Press Ltd Publication Date: 27/01/2005 ISBN-13: 9781857547719  Details: Type: Paperback Format: Books
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FRANK O'HARA was born in Maryland in 1926, and studied music and then English at Harvard University. His first book of poems was published in 1952. He worked at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, edited Art News and wrote extensively on painting. He died in 1966 and most of his poetry was collected by Donald Allen and appeared posthumously.

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Staff Choice

Frank O’Hara is a poet who really appeals to me. His aimless wanderings in New York City are recorded in his poems, scribbled down on serviettes and scrap paper during his lunch breaks. These are improvisational, non pre-mediated writings that are so deep and revelatory, with so much charisma and appeal! O’Hara takes us to New York, to his city; he lets us see a world through a poet’s eyes; he offers us intimate insights into a poet’s life and maybe even inspires us to scribble down a poem or two. - Telka

St Pancras International Bookshop - 12/08/2011

I've never thought about who my favourite poet is, but if I did I'd have to consider Frank O'Hara. Writing in the mid-20th century, his poems are concerned with art and modernity, film stars and cocktail bars, all explored with lush lyricism and self-awareness. Have a look at the intensely vulnerable 'Meditations in an Emergency' and the swooning, gorgeous love poem 'Having a Coke With You' to see just how remarkable he was. - Adam

Westfield White City Bookstore - 16/04/2012


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