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If I Don't Know

The comic brilliance and formal skills which propelled Making Cocoa for Kingsley Amis and Serious Concerns into the bestseller lists are much in evidence here. But a softer, lyrical voice, also present in the earlier books, is given more room to develop in poems about gardens and contentment and the poignancy of having something to lose. If I Don't Know ends with a longer poem, a moving narrative called 'The Teacher's Tale'. Fireworks Poems (from If I Don't Know) I Faster and faster, They vanish into darkness: Our years together. II Write it in fire across the night: Some men are more or less all right.
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If I Don't Know by Wendy Cope extends the variousness of the occasions in which Cope's formidable abilities for finding the comedy of the examined life can shine.

About the Author

Wendy Cope was born in Erith, Kent. After university she worked for fifteen years as a primary-school teacher in London. Her first collection of poems, Making Cocoa for Kingsley Amis, was published in 1986. In 1987 she received a Cholmondley Award for poetry and in 1993 she was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. In 1995 she won the American Academy of Letters Michael Braude Award for Light Verse and in 1999 she was awarded a Hon. D.Lit from King Alfred's College, Winchester (Southampton University). She has written and edited numerous poetry volumes and anthologies for both adults and children, and was shortlisted for the 2001 Whitbread Poetry Book of the Year for If I Don't Know.

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