The Great Poets – John Masefield

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John Masefield (1878-1967) was one of the most prolific, popular and successful poets of the twentieth century. Masefield broke upon Edwardian literature with the startling work entitled The Everlasting Mercy, which described the spiritual enlightenment of a drunken poacher. Over the span of his lifetime, he was appointed Poet Laureate and amassed a large number of admirers, which included such high-profile names as John Betjeman, Robert Graves and W.B. Yeats. This collection contains thirty-six poems and spans Masefield’s entire career. There are early poems from Salt-Water Ballads (1902) and Ballads (1903), followed by extracts from the narrative poems The Everlasting Mercy, Dauber and Reynard the Fox. The selection also includes a number of sonnets including ‘On Growing Old’, as well as his poetry on the Romans, alongside a number of rarities.

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Audiobook Details:

Author: John Masefield
Read by: Ronald Pickup
Audiobook Type: selections
Publisher: Naxos Audiobooks
Running time (hh:mm:ss): 01:07:23
Download size: 32 MB
ISBN: 9781843797388

About the Reader

Ronald Pickup

Ronald Pickup works extensively in both stage and screen productions. His recent film work includes The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and Prince of Persia: Sands of Time. He has also appeared in the television series Parade's End, Larkrise to Candleford, Fortunes of War and Orwell on Jura. His theatre credits include Heartbreak House, Waiting for Godot, Uncle Vanya, Peer Gynt and Long Day's Journey Into Night.

Reviews for this Audiobook:

Masefield?s work spanned more than sixty years. His skills ? rhythms and rhymes, ballads, dramatic narratives, sonnets ? and his interests, including Ancient Rome, the sea, nature and country ways, may have fallen out of fashion, but are undeniable. His lines on ageing find an echo: 'my dog and I too old for roving? and his plea 'may love?s gold coin be current with us yet.? Ronald Pickup matches all the poet?s moods. Rachel Redford, The Oldie

This appears to be the first recording of a Masefield collection since the poet?s own LPs in the late 1950s and early 60s. The now unfashionable long narrative poems are only excerpted here, but the selection of Masefield?s shorter works is well considered. It includes Sea Fever, of course, but there?s a great range of tone in the rest. Ronald Pickup finds the right voice for each type of poem ? from the rough countryman for Saul Kane?s Madness to the elegiac note of the WWI sonnets. The arrangement is (with one exception) chronological, so the listener can follow the evolution of this UK poet laureate?s work and style. D.M.H., AudioFile