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B - after Dante
Ned Denny
Paperback / softback
Carcanet Poetry
UK Publication Date

"It was dusk, when the dark earth stains the blueing air

and soothes bird in tall tree and beast in silent lair;

I alone amidst all that hush of soil and leaf

prepared for the war of the way and the way's great grief,

of which an undistracted heart may speak or sing..."

Published to coincide with the 700th anniversary of Dante's death, Ned Denny's baroque, line-by-line reimagining - the follow-up to his Seamus Heaney Prize-winning collection Unearthly Toys - shapes the Divine Comedy into nine hundred 144-syllable stanzas. Audacious, provocative and eminently readable, tender and brutal by turns, rooted in sacred doctrine yet with one eye on the profane modern world, this poet's version - in the interpretative tradition of Chapman, Dryden and Pope - is a living, breathing Dante for our times. Hell has never seemed so savage, nor heaven so sublime.

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Ned Denny was born in London in 1975 and has worked as a postman, art critic, book reviewer, music journalist and gardener. His poems and remakes have appeared in publications including PN Review, Poetry Review, The White Review, Oxford Poetry, the TLS, and Modern Poetry in Translation. Carcanet published his first collection, Unearthly Toys: Poems and Masks, in February 2018 and B, a version of the Divine Comedy, is forthcoming. His book Unearthly Toys: Poems & Masks was awarded the 2019 Seamus Heaney Prize for Best First Collection.

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