As featured on the Antiques Roadshow, the work of Timothy Corsellis is made available here, for the first time, in a collected edition. One hundred poems have been chosen and arranged in such a way as to bring out the unique literary and historical interest of the short life and long work of this unusual war poet. They have been grouped in roughly chronological order in six chapters, each accompanied by a thematic introduction which places them in the social and intellectual contexts from which they sprung: the Munich crisis and the search for other ideas of a Christian society, the fall of France and the possibility of a Federal Union, days in the East End and nights in Chelsea during and after the Blitz, life and death in the air. The poems do not only tell a personal tale; they also tell a political one. Interwoven with the biography of a gifted poet whose life and work were cut tragically short by his wartime death, are two even more striking stories. The first is the historical account of an RAF-trained pilot who, in January 1941, at the height of the Blitz, refused to become a bomber-pilot because it would mean the bombing of civilians. The second is the literary story of the connections between Timothy Corsellis and Stephen Spender, their actual encounter in September 1941 and its enduring consequences.
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