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Northman: John Hewitt (1907-87)An Irish writer, his world, and his times$
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W. J. McCormack

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198739821

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198739821.001.0001

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‘The Red Hand’, a Young Man’s Poemosaic

‘The Red Hand’, a Young Man’s Poemosaic

(p.33) Break for Text I ‘The Red Hand’, a Young Man’s Poemosaic
Northman: John Hewitt (1907-87)

W. J. McCormack

Oxford University Press

A close reading of Hewitt’s ambitious early (and unfinished) composition ‘The Red Hand, a Poemosaic’, elicits a great variety of concerns and anxieties, political, religious and ‘identity’ related. From the archives, Notebook 10 is a carefully inscribed and undated copy of poems written in the 1930s, most of them (perhaps all) arranged as a sequence. In addition to examining the poetry, it allows for greater understanding of his methods of record keeping through fair copies rather than worksheets, with implications for the biographer’s task. Though some lines and themes are traceable in later published work, Notebook 10 is an essentially private record of a private mind.

Keywords:   John Hewitt, private records, Notebook 10, The Red Hand, poemosaic

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