By Geoffrey Hill b. 1932 Geoffrey Hill
The strident high   
civic trumpeting   
of misrule. It is
what we stand for.

Wild insolence,   
aggregates without   
distinction. Courage   
of common men:

spent in the ruck   
their remnant witness
after centuries   
is granted them

like a pardon.
And other fealties   
other fortitudes
broken as named—

brokenly recalled,   
its archaic laws   
and hymnody;

and destroyed hope   
that so many times
is brought with triumph   
back from the dead.

Geoffrey Hill, “Respublica” from New and Collected Poems, 1952-1992. Copyright © 1994 by Geoffrey Hill. Used with the permission of Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

Source: New and Collected Poems 1952-1992 (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 1994)

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Poet Geoffrey Hill b. 1932


Subjects History & Politics, Social Commentaries

Poetic Terms Syllabic

 Geoffrey  Hill


Geoffrey Hill was born in Worcestershire, England in 1932. From a working-class family, Hill attended Oxford where his work was first published by the poet Donald Hall. These poems later collected in For the Unfallen: Poems 1952-1958 (1959) marked an astonishing debut. In dense poems of gnarled syntax and astonishing rhetorical power, Hill planted the seeds of style and concern that he has continued to cultivate over his long . . .

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SUBJECT History & Politics, Social Commentaries


Poetic Terms Syllabic

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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