Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
The Alvarez GenerationThom Gunn, Geoffrey Hill, Ted Hughes, Sylvia Plath, and Peter Porter$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

William Wootten

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781789627947

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781789627947.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 04 August 2021

‘I Don’t Like Dramatizing Myself’

‘I Don’t Like Dramatizing Myself’

Chapter:
(p.181) Chapter Thirteen ‘I Don’t Like Dramatizing Myself’
Source:
The Alvarez Generation
Author(s):

William Wootten

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.3828/liverpool/9781789627947.003.0013

This chapter considers the poetry of Thom Gunn. While discussing ‘The Gas Poker’ a poem from his last volume, 2000's Boss Cupid, Gunn remarked: ‘I don't like dramatizing myself. I don't want to be Sylvia Plath. The last person I want to be!’ The chapter examines the reasons behind this remark. It looks at ‘Expression’, a poem from his 1982 collection The Passages of Joy, suggesting that the lack of expression emanating from its mother and son has its correlative in the lack of direct expression in Gunn's verse of his relationship to his mother and to the manner of her death. Following a surfeit of histrionic emotionalism and suicide in early life, Gunn had little cause to seek it out in art and sought a mentor who would make poetic theory and practice a bulwark against them.

Keywords:   Thom Gunn, poets, poetry, poems, Sylvia Plath, The Gas Poker, Expression, suicide

Liverpool Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.