Dear friends in poetry:
I am teaching a four part course (via ZOOM) on the poetry of Dylan Thomas this fall which I thought you might be interested in. Here is the basic information, and a link to register. I have included a description of the class at the end. There’s a flyer at the end with the basic information.
Instructor: Tom Daley
October 15, 22, 29; November 5, 2021
4 Fridays from 10:00 am-12:00 noon (Eastern time)
Course description: Dylan Thomas’s eloquence was achieved by a combination of brooding and exuberance. A master of breaking private images into public consciousness, he was a difficult poet who nevertheless won a wide following for his celebration of the human body, of the wonders of his childhood in Wales, and of Christian mythology. His poetry ranges from the hyper-tragic to the hyper-comical. More than almost any other English-speaking poet of the mid-twentieth century, he honored the oral and bardic tradition that was poetry’s birthright with his prophetic vision and his haunting, stentorian, and sometimes bombastic voice.
Although Dylan Thomas’s critical reputation has shifted back and forth over the years since his death, poems such as “Do not go gentle into that good night,” “Fern Hill,” “Poem in October,” and “And death shall have no dominion” have not only entered the canon of poetry in English, but might be counted among the poems almost any lover of poetry has at once time or another been intrigued by, even enchanted with.
In this four-part course, we will go through close readings of representative poems, paying careful attention to his uses of and innovations in traditional poetic form and meter and to his deft crafting of unsettling and unusual imagery.
Required Text: The Collected Poems of Dylan Thomas (with an introduction by Paul Muldoon)