Fredy Neptune : a novel in verse /

A novel in verse on the adventures of a German-Australian sailor early this century, eg. "The first I heard that the War had really come / was a black-faced officer with a target and a church / on his cap, directing sailors to rip / our decks up, for the coal below. / I turned out of my hammock...

Full description

Saved in:
Main Author: Murray, Les A., 1938-
Format: Book
Language:English
Published:New York : Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, ©1999.
Subjects:
Related Information:Contributor biographical information 
Related Information: Publisher description 
Tags: Add Tag
No Tags, Be the first to tag this record!
Main Author:Murray, Les A., 1938-
Summary:A novel in verse on the adventures of a German-Australian sailor early this century, eg. "The first I heard that the War had really come / was a black-faced officer with a target and a church / on his cap, directing sailors to rip / our decks up, for the coal below. / I turned out of my hammock / to fight them--and our bos'un chucked me a shovel: / We're coaling that battlecruiser. / There! The English are after her!" By an Australian writer.

A riveting, beautiful novel in verse by Australia's greatest contemporary poet, winner of the 1996 T. S. Eliot Prize.

I never learned the old top ropes,
I was always in steam.
Less capstan, less climbing,
more re-stowing cargo.
Which could be hard and slow
as farming- but to say

Why this is Valparaiso!

Or: I'm in Singapore and know my way about
takes a long time to get stale
.-from Book I, "The Middle Sea"

When German-Australian sailor Friedrich "Fredy" Boettcher is shanghaied aboard a German Navy battleship at the outbreak of World War I, the sight of frenzied mobs burning Armenian women to death in Turkey causes him, through moral shock, to lose his sense of touch. This mysterious disability, which he knows he must hide, is both protection and curse, as he orbits the high horror and low humor of a catastrophic age.Told in a blue-collar English that regains freshness by eschewing the mind-setof literary language, Fredy's picaresque life-as, perhaps, the only Nordic Superman ever-is deep-dyed in layers of irony and attains a mind-inverting resolution.

Descriptive content provided by Syndetics™, a Bowker service.

Physical Description:255 pages ; 24 cm
ISBN:0374158541 (alk. paper)
9780374158545 (alk. paper)
Author Notes:

Les A. Murray was born Leslie Allan Murray in Australia on October 17, 1938. He was a poet, anthologist, and critic. His career spanned more than forty years, and he published nearly 30 volumes of poetry, as well as two verse novels and collections of his prose writings. His early work was published in Honi Soit and the literary journal Southerly. His first book, The Ilex Tree written with Geoffrey Lehmann, was published in 1965. Murray's first solo collection, The Weatherboard Cathedral, was published in 1969. In the early 1970s, he stopped working as a public servant to write poetry full-time.

His works included An Absolutely Ordinary Rainbow, Waiting for the Past, On Bunyah, New Selected Poems, Learning Human, Conscious and Verbal, The Biplane Houses, Poems the Size of Photographs, Taller When Prone, and Killing the Black Dog: A Memoir of Depression. He received the Grace Leven Prize for Poetry for Dog Fox Field in 1990, the Kenneth Slessor Prize for Poetry for Translations from the Natural World in 1993, the T. S. Eliot Prize for Subhuman Redneck Poems in 1996, and the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry in 1998. He edited the journal Poetry Australia from 1973 until 1979, was a poetry editor for Angus & Robertson from 1976 to 1990, and was the literary editor of Quadrant from 1991 to 2018. He was awarded an Order of Australia. He died after a long illness on April 29, 2019 at the age of 80.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Descriptive content provided by Syndetics™, a Bowker service.