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on July 13, 2011 :
Another great volume of medieval poetry from G.R. Grove.
(reviewed long after purchase)
on Jan. 29, 2011 :
I enjoyed reading this collection of poems. The intermixing of poems about the SCA and medieval Welsh society worked pretty well. I personally liked the strictly Welsh ones better, since I've read the Young Gwernin Trilogy and I have some understanding of the culture. Some of the animal poems were good; the cat wishing to catch birds was a favorite.
The poems definitely evoked a strong medieval sense, and the feeling of being a part of a warband. If you are interested in medieval poetic forms and content than this collection would be a good read.
(reviewed long after purchase)
on Dec. 31, 2010 :
With Pryderi's Pigs and Other Poems, I was transported back to the Middle Ages, when bards were welcomed as much for their songs as for their news. The poems were lyrical, and I could only imagine how they would sound set to music. My previous exposure to medieval verse and prose consisted mainly of Beowulf and the Eddas. Pryderi's Pigs is accessible for the modern reader but retains the flavor of the Middle Ages.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)
on Dec. 11, 2010 :
In her introduction to Pyderi’s Pigs and other poems, author G.R. Grove describes this recent collection of poems, her second, as being written in medieval fixed forms in an attempt to reproduce the “sound and feel of medieval Welsh poetry in modern English.” I know nothing of medieval fixed forms but can attest that many of the poems read well out loud. Here in the Philippines where English is taught as a second language and is the “language of instruction” in many classrooms, one common teaching strategy is the somewhat redundantly named “voice choir,” where poetry is dramatized and read by a group of divergent “light” and “dark’ voices. Many of these poems would be excellent voice choir selections. Guernen’s Boast, the first poem in the collection, will serve as an example:
“At the back of the North
I had my beginning
Near the Head of the
I got my birth
Taliesin was my teacher
First Bard of the Cymry”
Finding suitable poems that can be as easily divided into voices as these can is not as easy as one might expect. There are at least twenty poems in the collection that are suitable for voice choir.
As to the content and form of the poems, there is an interesting mix: both narrative and lyrical poems, riddles, even a handful of limericks. Most of the poems center on an imaginative interpretation of life in Wales during a period described by the author as “the SCA period (approximately 600-1600 AD).” SCA being the Society for Creative Anachronisms.
If you like to read poetry out loud or listen to it read, you will enjoy Pyderi’s Pigs and other poems, and if you like to imagine yourself back in time to an earlier age of magic and knights in armor, this is just the thing for you.
(reviewed the day of purchase)