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Lynette Roberts

 

 

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Lynette Roberts
Lynette Roberts (4 July 1909 – 26 September 1995) was a Welsh poet, born Evelyn Beatrice Roberts in Buenos Aires to parents of Welsh extraction.

Life
She came to London while still young, where she studied at the Central School for Arts and Crafts. She settled in Wales in the 1940s, where she painted and had poetry published by Faber and Faber (Poems (1944), Gods with stainless ears: a heroic poem (1951)). At that time she was married to the poet Keidrych Rhys, and living a difficult life in Llanybri. She had two children with him (a daughter, Angharad, in April 1945, and a son, Prydein, in November 1946); they divorced in 1949.

She is the dedicatee of Robert Graves's The White Goddess in its first edition, and provided much of the Welsh material used by him.

Writing
The Endeavour: Captain Cook's first voyage to Australia (1954) was a prose work. Later in life, she repudiated her work and refused to permit it to be reprinted. An edition of her collected poems was issued by Seren Press after her death but immediately withdrawn because of legal problems with the Roberts estate; a new Collected Poems finally appeared in 2006 from Carcanet, edited by Patrick McGuinness. A volume of miscellaneous prose – diaries from her time in Llanybri, correspondence with Robert Graves, memoirs of the Sitwells and T. S. Eliot, an essay on "village dialect" and short stories – appeared in 2008. An unpublished novel, Nesta, written in 1944, is apparently lost.

Bibliography
Writings by Lynette Roberts

  • 1942 - Two poems:'To a Welsh woman' and 'The circle of C' [poems in] Caseg broadsheets of Welsh poetry no.4 (Caseg Press)
  • 1944 - [Eight poems in] Modern Welsh Poetry; edited by Keidrych Rees (Faber & Faber)
  • 1944 - Poems (Faber & Faber)
  • 1944 - An introduction to village dialect: with seven stories (The Druid Press)
  • 1951 - Gods with stainless ears: a heroic poem (Faber & Faber)
  • 1954 - The Endeavour: Captain Cook’s first voyage to Australia (Peter Owen)
  • 1983 - 'Parts of an autobiography', Poetry Wales, 19, no.2, pp.30-50
  • 2005 - 'A South American childhood' [transcript of radio talk], New Welsh Review, Issue 70 (Winter 2005)
  • 2005 - Collected poems; edited by Patrick McGuinness (Carcanet) ISBN 1857548426
  • 2008 - Diaries, letters and recollections; edited with an introduction by Patrick McGuinness (Carcanet) ISBN 1857548566

Criticism and Biography

  • [Anon], 'Obituary: Lynette Roberts', The Times, 4 October, 1995, p.1
  • [Anon], 'Obituary: Lynette Roberts', The Daily Telegraph, 16 November, 1995, p.33
  • Bainbridge, Charles, 'Around my cradled self' [review of Collected Poems], The Guardian, March 11, 2006, p.18
  • Conran, Anthony, 'Lynette Roberts, 1909-1995, and In Memoriam', Poetry Wales, 31, no.3, (1996), p.3-4
  • Conran, Anthony, 'Lynette Roberts: the Lyric Pieces', Poetry Wales, 19, no.2 (1983), 125-133
  • Conran, Anthony, 'Lynette Roberts: War Poet', Anglo-Welsh Review, 65, (1979), 50-62. Also published as pp.188-200 in The Cost of strangeness: essays on the English poets of Wales (Llandysul: Gomer Press, 1982 ISBN 0850888654
  • Jarvis, Matthew, 'Lynette Roberts,Collected Poems' [review], Poetry Wales, 42, no.1, (Summer 2006), 35-38
  • Lewis, Alun, 'Correspondence with Lynette Roberts and Keidrych Rees', Wales,VIII, no.28 (Feb/March 1948), 410-431
  • Lloyd, Joanna, 'The Correspondence between Lynette Roberts and Robert Graves, 1943-1952', Poetry Wales, 19, no.2, (1983), 51-124
  • Lloyd-Morgan, Ceridwen, 'Insights from an outsider' [review of Collected Poems], Planet: the Welsh International, Issue 176
  • McGuinness, Patrick, 'The Poetry of Lynette Roberts', PN Review, 32, no. 2 [Issue 166] (Nov -Dec 2005), 52-59
  • Matthews, Steven, 'I think alone' [review of Collected Poems], Poetry Review, 96, no.1 (Spring 2006)
  • Pikoulis, John, 'Awen warcheidiol: mae cerddi anarferol Lynette Roberts yn ei gosod ymhlith y goreuon o'r llenorion Eingl-Gymreig', Barn 394 (1995), 44-5
  • Pikoulis, John, '[Introduction to] Six Poems by Lynette Roberts', Poetry Wales, 34, no.2 (October 1998), p.3
  • Pikoulis, John, 'Lynette Roberts and Alun Lewis', Poetry Wales, 19, no.2, (1983) p.9-29
  • Pikoulis, John, 'Obituary: Lynette Roberts', The Guardian, 13 October 1995, p.117
  • Skoulding, Zoe, 'Review of Lynette Roberts-Collected Poems', Poetry Wales, 41, no.4, (Spring 2006), 5-7
  • Stephens, Meic, 'Obituary: Lynette Roberts', The Independent, 28 September, 1995, p.18
  • Wheale, Nigel, 'Beyond the Trauma Stratus: Lynette Roberts' Gods with Stainless Ears and the Post-War Cultural Landscape', Welsh Writing in English: A Yearbook of Critical Essays, 3, (1997), 98-117
  • Wheale, Nigel, 'Lynette Roberts: Legend and Form in the 1940s', Critical Quarterly, 36, no. 3 (Fall 1994), 4-19


 

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