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The Authentic Touch

Authors: James Kirkup

Published by Bluechrome Publishing

ISBN: 9781904781592

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The Authentic Touch

What more natural
than that an old poet should
write of his old age?
Yet at only sixteen I
wrote one of my poems on

“Thoughts of an old man
on discovering that his
days of usefulness
have passed…” an elegy for
youth that was just beginning.

And they printed it
in the school magazine, signed
“Anonymous.” – But
everyone knew it was me.
It had that authentic touch

James Kirkup’s poem The Love that Dares to Speak its Name, which describes a sexual fantasy of a homosexual soldier for the dead Christ, was banned in 1979 under the UK's blasphemy laws after Gay News published it on June 3, 1976. The blasphemous libel charge named Gay News Ltd and the editor, Denis Lemon, and was brought by Mary Whitehouse, founder and first president of the National Viewers' and Listeners' Association.

James Kirkup (born April 23, 1918) is a prolific English poet, translator, travel writer and reviewer. He was brought up in South Shields, and educated at Durham University. He has written 30 books, including an autobiography and plays. He was a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.

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