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Alice Oswald
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Alice Oswald — Falling Awake: Poems
Wednesday, October 4th, 2017 at 6PM — Labyrinth Books

Labyrinth is honored to welcome Alice Oswald to the store as part of her longer visit to Princeton University, sponsored by the Department of Classics. For details about her inaugural Robert Fagles lecture in Classics and the Contemporary Arts on the 2nd, please see here.


Alice Oswald was trained as a classicist. Her first collection of poetry, The Thing in the Gap-Stone Stile, received a Forward Poetry Prize. Oswald often works in book-length projects and is known for her interests in gardening, ecology, and music. Her other collections of poetry include Dart, Woods, etc., Weeds and Wild Flowers, A Sleepwalk on the Severn, and Memorial, which won the 2013 Warwick prize for writing. She has also won the T.S. Elliot Prize.


Her most recent book, Falling Awake, was awarded the Griffin Poetry Prize and offers “vivid…further proof of [Oswald's] bold engagement with poetry’s narrative possibilities." (Teju Cole) Alice Oswald’s acclaimed volume Memorial portrays fallen soldiers from Homer’s Iliad. Falling Awake expands on that imagery—defining life as a slowly falling weight, where beings fight against their inevitable end. Oswald re-imagines classical figures such as Orpheus and Tithonus alive in an English landscape together with shadows, flies, villagers, dew, crickets—all characterized in tension between the weight of death and their own willpower.


let me shuffle forward
and tell you the two minute life of rain
starting right now
lips open and lidless cold all-seeing gaze


Co-sponsored by Princeton University's Department of Classics and Council for the Humanities

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