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Collected Poems

Collected Poems

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First and foremost Causley was a poet of place. He called Cornwall ‘the granite kingdom’ and always recognised and revelled in its unique qualities. Much of his work has a Cornish flavour, sometimes nostalgic, sometimes wistful, whimsical even but always celebrating Cornwall’s history, legends and its elemental landscape. As well as words Causley loved music and was able to play both the fiddle and the piano. In his youth he was the pianist of a local band called the Rhythm Boys and provided the music for village dances around Cornwall. He once said ‘I think I have frightened more woodworm out of more pianos than anyone in the west of England.’ War & Teaching Causley was born at Launceston, Cornwall, to Charles Samuel Causley, who worked as a groom and gardener, and his wife Laura Jane Bartlett, who was in domestic service. He was educated at the local primary school and Launceston College. When he was seven, in 1924, his father died from long-standing injuries incurred in World War I. [1] He was much in demand at poetry readings in the United Kingdom and worldwide—the latter travels were sometimes as part of Arts Council and British Council initiatives. He also made many television and radio appearances over the post-war period, particularly for the BBC in the West Country, and as the presenter for many years of the BBC Radio 4 series Poetry Please. Charles Stanley Causley (24 August 1917 – 4 November 2003) was a Cornish poet, schoolmaster and writer. His work is noted for its simplicity and directness and for its associations with folklore, especially when linked to his native Cornwall.

Poetry (ballads, other formal poetic structures and free verse; also, children's poetry); short plays, including for radio; libretti; short stories; essays and criticism.

War & Teaching

He was presented with the Heywood Hill Literary Prize in 2000. Between 1962 and 1966 he was a member of the Poetry Panel of the Arts Council of Great Britain. He was twice awarded a travelling scholarship by the Society of Authors. There was a campaign to have him appointed Poet Laureate on the death of Sir John Betjeman, but in the end, that role was given to Ted Hughes. Causley himself was not very keen on the idea. However, to the people of his home town, he became "the greatest poet laureate we never had". He was interviewed by Roy Plomley on Desert Island Discs on 1 December 1979: his music choices included five classical selections and three others, while his chosen book was Boswell's Life of Johnson. [8] Causley’s first published collection of poems, Farewell, Aggie Weston, was published by The Hand and Flower Press in 1951. Survivor’s Leave followed in 1953, and his literary reputation was fully established in 1957 with Union Street by Rupert Hart-Davis, featuring an enthusiastic introduction by Edith Sitwell. Other collections of new poems by Causley came out during the 1960s: Johnny Alleluia and Underneath the Water. His poetry became widely anthologised, and to he shared volumes with other contemporary British poets. He also cemented his reputation as an anthologist, critic, essayist and broadcaster — especially as the host of BBC Radio 4’s Poetry Please for many years.

Causley at 70 (Peterloo Poets, 1987 – ed. Harry Chambers): a collection of 25 poetry and prose tributes from other writers, plus 9 items of archival material, unpublished autobiographical fragments, etc., by Causley, and a bibliography; ISBN 978-0905291895 Now eighty, Charles Causley stands as one of Britain’s three or four finest living poets. He is the master of at least five major poetic modes or genres–the short narrative, the war poem, the religious poem, children’s poetry, and the personal lyric. The historical accident that none of these categories, except the last, is currently fashionable among literary critics will not concern posterity. Nor does it greatly concern most contemporary readers. No other living British poet of Causley’s distinction rivals his general popularity or commands so diverse a readership. His admirers stretch from schoolchildren to his fellow poets. (After Betjeman’s death, British poets voted Causley as their first choice to become the next Poet Laureate.) The special quality of this esteem is evident in the comments of the current Laureate, Ted Hughes: Among the English poetry of the last half century, Charles Causley’s could well turn out to be the best loved and most needed.’ Guz" = Devonport; "tiddley suit" = very smart suit.—Partridge, E. (1961), A Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English; 5th ed.; pp. 364 & 883.After demobilisation in 1946, he took advantage of a government scheme to train as a teacher at Peterborough. He then worked full-time as a teacher at his old school for over 35 years, teaching for his very final year at St. Catherine's CofE Primary elsewhere in the town, where the National School had been relocated. He twice spent time in Perth as a visiting Fellow at the University of Western Australia, and also worked at the Banff School of Fine Arts in Canada.

Sir Andrew Motion to Judge The Charles Causley Poetry Competition 2016". Literature Works SW - Nurturing literature development activity in South West England. 21 September 2016 . Retrieved 18 January 2017.Laurence Green (2013), All Cornwall Thunders at My Door: A Biography of Charles Causley. Sheffield: The Cornovia Press, p. 173, ISBN 978-1-908878-08-3. Other awards include the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry in 1967 and a Cholmondeley Award in 1971. In 1973/74 he was visiting fellow in poetry at the University of Exeter, from which institution he received an honorary doctorate on 7 July 1977. [7] Charles Causley (1917-2003) was born and brought up in Launceston, Cornwall and lived there for most of his life. His father died in the First World War when he was only seven and this, as well as his own experiences in the Second World War, affected him deeply. His poems draw inspiration from folk songs, hymns, and above all, ballads. His poetry was recognised by the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry in 1967 and his poetry is popular with everyone, making him, in the words of Ted Hughes, one of the “best loved and most needed” poets of the last fifty years. His first collection of poems, Farewell, Aggie Weston [1] (1951) contained his Song of the Dying Gunner A.A.1:

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