Selected Poems | Philippe Jaccottet (Paperback)

By Philippe Jaccottet, Derek Mahon (Foreword by), Derek Mahon (Translated by)

Wake Forest University Press, 9780916390310, 160pp.

Publication Date: November 1, 1988

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Philippe Jaccottet is one of a group of poets who turned away from the Surrealists’ sometimes abstruse experiments with form in favor of a muted lyrical expression born of a quasi-fraternal bonding with the wonder of earth, light, water, sky. This lyricism is steeped in an ambiguous sense of our planet’s vulnerability in this nuclear age. Jaccottet’s work has now developed steadily over nearly four decades as Derek Mahon points out in his introductory essay. In themes and form it will not seem alien to English language readers, yet Jaccottet’s voice is his own. The sensuous modulations of imagery, harmony, and mood are strangely moving and haunt the imagination.

About the Author

Born in Moudon, Switzerland in 1925, Philippe Jaccottet is one of the most prominent figures of the immediate post-war generation of French poets. He has lived in France since 1953, working as a translator and freelance writer. As well as poetry, he has published prose writings, notebooks and critical essays. He is particularly well known as a translator from the German language (Musil, Rilke, Mann, Holderlin), but he has also translated Homer, Plato, Ungaretti and Montale.