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A. S. J. Tessimond (Arthur Seymour John Tessimond) Biography

(1902–62), (Arthur Seymour John Tessimond), The Walls of Glass, Voices in a Giant City, Selection

Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: Sir Rabindranath Tagore Biography to James Thomson Biography

British poet, born in Birkenhead, Cheshire, educated at Charterhouse, to which he refused to return at the age of 16. After a period in London, he entered the University of Liverpool. By the age of 25 he had begun to distinguish himself as a poet; The Walls of Glass, his first collection of verse, appeared in 1934. Voices in a Giant City (1947) contained much of his finest work. The sombrely ironic lyricism with which the shabbier aspects of London are depicted makes incisive use of his sharply economical descriptive abilities. Tessimond's manner ranges between occasional poems of baldly outspoken statement and more characteristic subtleties of mood sometimes giving rise to attractively mysterious qualities. Selection (1958) contained material from his earlier volumes along with previously uncollected verse. A posthumous collection entitled Not Love Perhaps … appeared in 1978. Collected Poems (1985), edited and introduced by Hubert Nicholson, includes translations from the French poetry of Jacques Prévert.

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