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By: Aldous Huxley (1894-1963)

Crome Yellow by Aldous Huxley Crome Yellow

A shy, introverted young poet. A weekend in a magnificent English country house. A beautiful young lady whom the poet is secretly in love with. An assorted group of guests with varied interests, motives, ambitions and aspirations, and the complex web of history and events that connect all of them. Crome Yellow by Aldous Huxley was his first book, published in 1921, when he was just 27 years old. It is typical of many books written during this period by writers like Thomas Love Peacock and Somerset Maugham, centered round a country mansion and the quaint, British tradition of being invited to spend a weekend with a group of people whom one may or may not know...

Book cover Defeat of Youth and Other Poems

Though later known for his essays and novels, Aldous Huxley started his writing career as a poet. Published in 1918, The Defeat of Youth and Other Poems is his third compilation of poetry. The volume begins with "The Defeat of Youth", a sequence of twenty-two sonnets that explores irreconcilability of the ideal and the disappointing reality. Jerome Meckier called it “the century’s most successful sonnet sequence, better than Auden’s or Edna St. Vincent Millay’s.” In the rest of the volume, Huxley continues to explore themes started in The Burning Wheel, his first volume of poetry, including vision, blindness, and other contrasts...

Book cover Crome Yellow, Version 2

Fascinating and brilliant at many levels, Huxley's spoof of Lady Ottoline Morrell's famous bohemian gatherings is difficult to categorize. The ironic tone and caricaturish rendering of some characters makes it partly entertaining satire, but intertwined with the irony are a very human love story and much poignant social commentary. Denis Stone (Huxley himself) is a young poet hopelessly enamored of the languid Anne Wimbush, who comes to Priscilla Wimbush's Crome estate for several weeks of intellectual and artistic escape...

Book cover Burning Wheel

Though Aldous Huxley is best known for his later novels and essays, he started his writing career as a poet. The Burning Wheel is his first work, a collection of thirty poems that pay homage in style to poets who wrote in the Romantic or the French symbolist styles. Many of the poems deal with themes of light, darkness, sight, music, art, war, and idealism vs. realism. Though the optimism in his early works waned as he became older, his characteristically optimistic and determined point of view shines through. The last poem was read collaboratively by ezwa, AlgyPug and Larry Wilson.

Book cover Jonah

Though Aldous Huxley gained popularity from his novels and essays, he started his writing career as a poet. Jonah, his second compilation of poetry, is a collection of twelve poems (four of which are written in French). He published it, at the age of 23, for Christmas in 1917. He stated his intention to stop writing poetry at the end of the volume, but actually went on to publish numerous compilations after Jonah. (Mary Kay)


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