Douglas described his poetic style as 'extrospective'; that is, he focused on external impressions rather than inner emotions. The result is a poetry which, according to his detractors, can be callous in the midst of war's atrocities. For others, Douglas's work is powerful and unsettling because its exact descriptions eschew egotism and shift the burden of emotion from the poet to the reader. His best poetry is generally considered to rank alongside the twentieth-century's finest soldier-poetry.
In his poem, "Desert Flowers" (1943), Douglas mentions World War I poet Isaac Rosenberg claiming that he is only repeating what "Isaac" has already ... more »
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How can I live among this gentleKeith Douglas (1920-1944), British poet. Aristocrats (l. 9-14). . . Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry, The. Richard Ellmann and Robert O'Clair, ed...
absolescent breed of heroes, and not weep?
for they are falling into two legends
in which their stupidity and chivalry <...
''For here the lover and killer are mingledKeith Douglas (1920-1944), British poet. Vergissmeinnicht (l. 21-24). . . Oxford Book of Twentieth-Century English Verse, The. Philip Larkin, ed. ...
who had one body and one heart.
And death who had the soldier singled
has done the lover mortal hurt.''
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