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Influences: Thomas Hardy


Henri Coulette's 'The War of the Secret Agents'
WD Snodgrass Poet
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That was a poem in… in monologues by a bunch of British agents who were sent to the Continent to… to, you know, to spy on the Germans while… while France was un… under German domination. And… but they were sent there really to be caught as a prot… as a way to protect the other real secret agents. They… they were sent there with full knowledge that they would be caught. And… and they were, and mostly executed. One or… one or two escaped. And… and they are interviewed near the end. But… but they're quite bumbling secret agents, and… yeah. And… and that… that did indeed become a kind of model for me.

American poet WD Snodgrass, entered the world of poetry with a bang winning several awards, including the Pulitzer Prize, for his first collection of poetry, Heart's Needle. A backlash followed his controversial fifth anthology “The Fuehrer Bunker”, but in recent years these poems have been reassessed and their importance recognised.

Listeners: William B. Patrick

William B. Patrick is a writer and poet who lives in Troy, New York. Among his work are the poetry volumes "We Didn't Come Here for This" and "These Upraised Hands", the novel "Roxa: Voices of the Culver Family" and the plays "Rescue" and "Rachel's Dinner". His most recent work is the non-fiction book "Saving Troy", based on the year he spent following the Troy Fire Department.

Mr. Patrick has been Writer-in-Residence at the New York State Writers Institute and has taught at Old Dominion University, Onondaga Community College, and Salem State College, and workshops in Screenwriting and Playwriting at the Blue Ridge Writers Conference in Roanoke, Virginia. He has received grants from the Academy of American Poets, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Massachusetts Artists Foundation, and the Virginia Commission for the Arts.

Tags: Monologues, The War of the Secret Agents, World War II, Europe, France, Henri Coulette

Duration: 1 minute, 3 seconds

Date story recorded: August 2004

Date story went live: 24 January 2008