Dannie Abse is a poet, author, doctor and playwright. Author of more than sixteen books of poetry, four novels and a memoir, he was recently awarded a Commander of the Order of the British Empire.
"The genuineness of Abse’s work depends on neither the ironic use of traditional forms and meters, as with Larkin; nor on the wrenching disjunction of syntax or leaps of associative imagery as with Hughes; nor on the allusive chthonic probings of Hill…If these poets are indisputably and typically English, then Abse’s work is triangulated…at a distance from all of them, way out in the center…Abse is a skeptical humanist, desiring belief by relying upon the visible.…The conversational tone is maintained with such calm and verisimilitude that language and rhetoric seem to do little to heighten tension; yet the meaning, the doubleness of implication, rises, all but imperceptibly, in the reader’s awareness.... His tone is quite his own, attractively enticing the reader into the poem before the reader knows where he has been brought, what realizations he must come to."
"Abse's poems are filled with wonder. He remains one of our few great poets of married love."
"Dannie Abse is a Welsh lyrical poet and medical doctor with a choirmaster's ear for language. Readers will hear, where there is narrative in these poems, a sometimes distant, sometimes nearby Welsh-English sound—call it pitch, call it history. And where there is song, something other—passages particularly beautiful in a language that is extra-English. There is mystical, moral sunlight in Abse's poetry."
Sheep Meadow Press