Christopher Middleton

(1926 / Truro, Cornwall / UK)

Christopher Middleton
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Christopher Middleton (born 10 June 1926) is a British poet and translator, especially of German literature.
He was born John Christopher Middleton in Truro, Cornwall, in 1926. Following four years' service in the Royal Air Force, he studied at Merton College, Oxford, matriculating in 1948. He then held academic positions at the University of Zürich and King's College London. In 1966 he took up a position as Professor of Germanic Languages & Literature at the University of Texas, Austin, retiring in 1998. Middleton has published translations of Robert Walser, Nietzsche, Hölderlin, Goethe, Gert Hofmann and many others. He has received various awards, including the Geoffrey Faber Memorial... more »

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Best Poem of Christopher Middleton

The Diving Apprentices

Sometimes you watch them going out to sea
On such a day as this, in the worst of weathers,
Their boat holding ten or a dozen of them,
In black rubber suits crouched around the engine housing,
Tanks of air, straps and hoses, and for their feet
Enormous flippers.

The bow, with such a load on board,
Hammers through the whitecaps, while they talk;
Junonian girls, Praxitelean boys, pelted on
By bursting clouds, by spray, eventually heave
The tanks upon their backs, the boat drifts at anchor,

And down they go to the...

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