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By H. T. Kirby-Smith

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

H. T. Kirby-Smith makes his case with wit and erudition, continuing chronologically and bringing up various examples of particular poems―from Latin, previous French, Italian, Anglo-Saxon, glossy French, and English. He issues out that old Greek poetry, together with the epics, was once a part of a musical context. in contrast, virtually 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 song; and Hughes from blues, jazz, and spirituals.

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

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