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By H. T. Kirby-Smith

"All artwork continually aspires towards the of music," wrote Walter Pater. The Celestial Twins, whereas spotting many affinities among tune and poetry, argues that poetry in Western tradition has many times separated itself from song contexts and that the easiest poetry is a simply verbal art.

H. T. Kirby-Smith makes his case with wit and erudition, continuing chronologically and bringing up quite a few examples of particular poems―from Latin, previous French, Italian, Anglo-Saxon, smooth French, and English. He issues out that old Greek poetry, together with the epics, was once a part of a musical context. in contrast, nearly no surviving Latin poetry was once written for musical functionality, however the meters of Latin poetry have been borrowed from Greek musical meters. equally, of their personal methods, Thomas Hardy, T. S. Eliot, and Langston Hughes all wrote out of musical contexts: Hardy from west-of-England songs and dances; Eliot from Wagnerian opera and overdue Beethoven chamber track; and Hughes from blues, jazz, and spirituals.

Although poets from Horace to Shakespeare to Dickinson have instinctively famous the separation of track and poetry, there have additionally been well-meaning makes an attempt to convey those allied arts again into shut organization with one another. yet in Kirby-Smith's view, poetry of the top order has continually maintained a deferential distance from song, even whereas holding a few reminiscence of musical rhythms and association.

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