Articles on Poems

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La Belle Dame sans Merci, as painted by Frank Dicksee, circa 1901. Bristol City Museum and Art Gallery, given by Mrs Yda Richardson/Wikimedia

How a stone knight inspired two very different visions of love from John Keats and Philip Larkin

Chichester Cathedral's stone effigy famously influenced Philip Larkin's An Arundel Tomb. But a new discovery suggests it may have inspired the tale John Keats wrote as La Belle Dame Sans Merci too.
There seems be an attractive quality to things that are ostensibly unhealthy or dangerous. Alisusha/Shutterstock.com

What’s behind our appetite for self-destruction?

Edgar Allen Poe, Sigmund Freud and cognitive scientists have all wrestled with the human tendency to behave in ways that are irrational and self-defeating.
David Malouf’s poetry collection An Open Book spans “a Beurre Bosch pear/in a fruit bowl to the planet”. Shutterstock

David Malouf’s An Open Book is poetry to sit with

Malouf's late return to poetry seems to bring him back in a new way to steadying poems that do justice to the open gaze, the sly wit, the swift imagination and the poise he has in spades.

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