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From his early book Crow to his recent book Wolf-Watching (FSG, 1991), Hughes's poetry has depicted raw, primordial conflicts in which the elements (earth, air, fire, water) are vital forces. These aspects of Hughes's poetic manner are ideally suited to the Metamorphoses, whose stories tell of the transformations -- through love, death, or radical physical change -- undergone by great figures of mythology: Hercules, Narcissus, Proserpina, Pygmalion, Midas, Bacchus, Arachne, Venus and Adonis, Pyramus and Thisbe. Transformation or metamorphosis, for Ovid, is a skeleton key to the workings of life itself and to the workings of art as well. Writing in clear, emphatic unrhymed verse, Hughes has transformed Ovid's Latin verses into English, giving us not only a new Ovid but a substantial new work of poetry in English.
This beautifully designed and produced edition of the Metamorphoses includes Hughes's brief Introduction.
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