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The Rattle Bag

An Anthology of Poetry

Edited by Seamus Heaney and Ted Hughes

Faber & Faber

The Rattle Bag is an anthology of poetry (mostly in English but occasionally in translation) for general readers and students of all ages and backgrounds. These poems have been selected by the simple yet telling criteria that they are the personal favorites of the editors, themselves two of contemporary literature's leading poets.

Moreover, Heaney and Hughes have elected to list their favorites not by theme or by author but simply by title (or by first line, when no title is given). As they explain in their Introduction: "We hope that our decision to impose an arbitrary alphabetical order allows the contents [of this book] to discover themselves as we ourselves gradually discovered them--each poem full of its singular appeal, transmitting its own signals, taking its chances in a big, voluble world."

With undisputed masterpieces and rare discoveries, with both classics and surprises galore, The Rattle Bag includes the work of such key poets as William Shakespeare, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Lewis Carroll, Dylan Thomas, Wallace Stevens, Elizabeth Bishop, and Sylvia Plath among its hundreds of poems. A helpful Glossary as well as an Index of Poets and Works are offered at the conclusion of this hefty, unorthodox, diverse, inspired, and inspiring collection of poetry.
The Rattle Bag is an anthology of poetry (mostly in English but occasionally in translation) for general readers and students of all ages and backgrounds. These poems have been selected by the simple yet telling criteria that they are the personal favorites of the editors, themselves two of contemporary literature's leading poets.

Moreover, Heaney and Hughes have elected to list their favorites not by theme or by author but simply by title (or by first line, when no title is given). As they explain in their Introduction: "We hope that our decision to impose an arbitrary alphabetical order allows the contents [of this book] to discover themselves as we ourselves gradually discovered them--each poem full of its singular appeal, transmitting its own signals, taking its chances in a big, voluble world."

With undisputed masterpieces and rare discoveries, with both classics and surprises galore, The Rattle Bag includes the work of such key poets as William Shakespeare, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Lewis Carroll, Dylan Thomas, Wallace Stevens, Elizabeth Bishop, and Sylvia Plath among its hundreds of poems. A helpful Glossary as well as an Index of Poets and Works are offered at the conclusion of this hefty, unorthodox, diverse, inspired, and inspiring collection of poetry.

REVIEWS

Praise for The Rattle Bag

"The method employed in arranging and presenting [the contents of this book] must surely be the one for all the best anthologies . . . The Rattle Bag sets a standard which other anthologies will find it difficult to equal." --Alan Brownjohn, Times Literary Supplement (London)

"A splendid, huge, resonant book." --Observer (London)

"A must for anyone at all who likes poetry." --Melvyn Bragg, The Times (London)
"The method employed in arranging and presenting [the contents of this book] must surely be the one for all the best anthologies . . . The Rattle Bag sets a standard which other anthologies will find it difficult to equal." --Alan Brownjohn, Times Literary Supplement (London)

"A splendid, huge, resonant book." --Observer (London)

"A must for anyone at all who likes poetry." --Melvyn Bragg, The Times (London)

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Edited by Seamus Heaney and Ted Hughes

  • Seamus Heaney (1939-2013) received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1995. His poems, plays, translations, and essays include Opened Ground, Electric Light, Beowulf, The Spirit Level, District and Circle, and Finders Keepers. Robert Lowell praised Heaney as the "most important Irish poet since Yeats."
    Ted Hughes, the author of numerous books of poetry, prose, and translation, was Poet Laureate to Queen Elizabeth II until his death in 1998. His last book of poems, Birthday Letters, won the Whitbread Book of the Year award—and was a much-discussed national bestseller. He lived in Devon, England.
  • Seamus Heaney Keith Barnes
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BUY THE BOOK

Available Formats and Book Details

The Rattle Bag

An Anthology of Poetry

Edited by Seamus Heaney and Ted Hughes

Nobel Prize For Literature
  • Trade Paperback

BOOKS FOR COURSES AVAILABLE

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FROM THE PUBLISHER

Faber & Faber

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