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Lead book review

The short, unhappy life of Ivor Gurney — wounded, gassed and driven insane

Andrew Motion describes the inner turmoil of the neglected poet Ivor Gurney

3 July 2021

9:00 AM

3 July 2021

9:00 AM

Dweller in Shadows: A Life of Ivor Gurney Kate Kennedy

Princeton University Press, pp.488, 30

The poet and composer Ivor Gurney (1890-1937) is a classic but nevertheless shocking example of literary neglect. Although he brought out two respectfully received collections of war poetry during his lifetime, the idiosyncrasies of his style have prevented him from being widely recognised as the equal of his greatest contemporaries.

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