Ted Hughes: Poems from “Crow”

Ted Hughes: A Bunch of Crow Poems Human Voices Wake Us

An episode from 8/31/21: Tonight, I read nine poems from Crow, by Ted Hughes. The sequence was an attempt by Hughes to create something like a new mythological cycle, and it follows Crow through ordeals that are comic, tragic, violent, tender, ridiculous, and cosmic.

Alongside Moortown Diary and River, Crow completes the triptych of Hughes’s best books. I can’t think of another poet who delved so deeply into nature, violence, autobiography, and myth in such different and powerful ways.

After its initial publication in 1970, Hughes wrote many other Crow poems, and the text of those in this episode are taken from his Collected Poems, where the largest gathering of them can be found:

  • King of Carrion
  • Crow and the Birds
  • Crow’s First Lesson
  • Crow Tyrannosaurus
  • A Childish Prank
  • Crowego
  • Song Against the White Owl
  • Crow’s Courtship
  • Crow’s Song About God 

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Any comments, or suggestions for readings I should make in later episodes, can be emailed to humanvoiceswakeus1@gmail.com.

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