Kirkup, James

(1918- )
   Born in South Shields, England, he was educated at the local high school and at Durham University. He held academic posts at Leeds University and at Kyoto University, Japan, where he was professor of English literature. He has published about thirty books from various publishers in Britain and abroad. His 1977 gay poem, The love that dares to speak its name, resulted in the first prosecution for blasphemous libel in over 50 years, and a suspended a sentence for the editor of Gay News, which published the poem. He was awarded the Japan P.E.N. prize for International Poetry and the Japan Festival Prize for A Book of Tanka (translation of Japanese poems into English) (1997). He currently resides in Andorra. Some of his poetry publications: The Drowned Sailor, 1947. A Correct Compassion, 1952. The Descent into the Cave, 1957. Paper Windows, 1968. A Bewick Bestiary, 1971. Islands in the Sky, 2004. No More Hiroshimas, 2004. Some of his poems: "Baby's Drinking Song," "Gay Boys," "Japanese Fan," "Sumo Wrestlers," "The Astronaut," "The Love of Older Men," "The Zen Archer."
   Sources: A Green Place: Modern Poems. William Jay Smith, ed. Delacorte Press/Seymour Lawren, 1982. A New Treasury of Children's Poetry, Old Favorites and New Discoveries. Joanna Cole, ed. Doubleday, 1984. Biography of James Kirkup (http://www.brindin.com/biogjk.htm). Knitting Circle, James Kirkup (http://myweb.lsbu.ac.uk/Kirkup, Jamesstafflag/jameskirkup.html). Spaceways: An Anthology of Space Poems. John Foster, ed. Oxford University Press, 1986. The Columbia Granger's Index to Poetry. 11th ed. The Columbia Granger's World of Poetry, Columbia University Press, 2005 (http://www.columbiagrangers.org). The Oxford Companion to English Literature. 6th edition. Margaret Drabble, ed. Oxford University Press, 2000. The Penguin Book of Homosexual Verse. Stephen Coote, ed. Penguin Books, 1983.

British and Irish poets. A biographical dictionary. . 2015.

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