By Rodney Stenning Edgecombe
While Thomas Hood has lengthy been considered as a minor comedian poet, this book--the first to commit itself completely to his verse--provides an in depth research of 2 'serious' poems ('Hero and Leander' and 'The Plea of the Midsummer Fairies') with the intention to supply a greater experience of his diversity. so much commentators have pointed to the effect of Keats on such events, yet shut exam unearths an excellent larger debt to Elizabethan and Metaphysical poets, whose occasionally playful deployment of the self-esteem struck a chord in his sensibility. even as, the ebook provides Hood's comedian genius its due, delivering particular money owed of the deftness and panache of his light-hearted oeuvre. One bankruptcy examines his expedition into the mock-heroic mode (Odes and Addresses to nice People), and one other his reliance on that airiest of types, the capriccio (Whims and Oddities). The learn concludes with an in depth exam of 'Miss Kilmansegg and Her useful Leg,' displaying how Hood was once right here capable of inflect a jeu d'esprit with a superb Juvenalian ardour.
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Additional info for A Self-divided Poet: Form and Texture in the Verse of Thomas Hood
Particularly neat is the quibble on variants of the same etymological root ("canalis"). — The stripe-like reduction of the City Road triggers another pun on the "little ways of men," reverting to the sermonic tone of "this little world"; while "labour," through a semantic wobble between the idea of its fruits and the idea of its agency, turns to dust before our very eyes. 19 ("dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return"), Hood gives it a technological turn by detaching the patronymic "Mac" from the name of the famous road-maker: And where is mortal labour gone?
That fork evokes the jacks of a harpsichord, while the knife prompts thoughts of its cousin, the jack-knife, not to mention the jack on which the roasts themselves are impaled, and the overwhelming versatility of Kitchiner himself as a Jack of all trades. Stanza 2 presents a fantastical portrait of the subject, passing bizarrely from John the Baptist (the severed head we see on a platter in such seicento pictures as Caracciolo's Salome) to the idea of plate as an engraving rather than a salver: Oh, to behold they features in thy book!
Phonetic contingency also issues in visual contingency: the bizarre image of a carving knife beside a tuning fork. That fork evokes the jacks of a harpsichord, while the knife prompts thoughts of its cousin, the jack-knife, not to mention the jack on which the roasts themselves are impaled, and the overwhelming versatility of Kitchiner himself as a Jack of all trades. Stanza 2 presents a fantastical portrait of the subject, passing bizarrely from John the Baptist (the severed head we see on a platter in such seicento pictures as Caracciolo's Salome) to the idea of plate as an engraving rather than a salver: Oh, to behold they features in thy book!
A Self-divided Poet: Form and Texture in the Verse of Thomas Hood by Rodney Stenning Edgecombe