Collected Poems: Hope Mirrlees

Collected Poems: Hope Mirrlees

Hope Mirrlees
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In Paris & Other Poems Hope Mirrlees' s remarkable long poem Paris, originally published by the Hogarth Press is 1920, is published alongside later poetry, prose essays and previously unpublished work. Paris is now recognised as a ' lost modernist masterpiece' , a daylong, psycho-geographical flanerie through the streets and metro tunnels of post-World War I Paris. Virginia Woolf called Paris ' obscure, indecent, and brilliant' , and it has been suggested that Mirrlees experimentation with language and form had an impact on T. S. Eliot' s composition of The Waste Land. Half a century later she started to publish poetry once more, work strikingly different from Paris, more formal and restrained, but with a maturity of voice and mood and touching on her later themes, including Roman Catholicism. Until the mid-1990s, Mirrlees' s reputation as an early modernist poet was obscured by her cult status as author of the fantasy novel Lud-in-the-Mist (1926). With this book she is back in the poetic limelight.
' Sandeep Parmar' s edition of Hope Mirrlees' poetry is a testimony to modern scholarship and provides a missing piece of the British modernist jigsaw. ' --Matthew Mitton, Women: A Cultural Review
Hope Mirrlees (1887-1978) was born in Kent and grew up in Scotland and South Africa. She studied at Newnham College, Cambridge, and in 1922 moved to Paris. Her first novel was published in 1919, followed by her long poem, Paris (Hogarth Press, 1920). Her other two novels are The Counterplot (1924) and the fantasy novel Lud-in-the-Mist (1926). Mirrlees converted to Catholicism and in the 1940s moved to South Africa. Three slim volumes of her poetry appeared during these later years, including Moods and Tensions (1976). She eventually returned to England where she died aged 91. Sandeep Parmar has a PhD on the modernist poet Mina Loy and is currently a Visiting Scholar at New York University.