Gabriele d'Annunzio (1863-1938), the most influential and controversial Italian poet of the 20th century, published his masterpiece "Halcyon" in 1903. It is a carefully organized sequence of 88 lyrics which, to gain their full effect, must be read as a whole. Halcyon is a "solar diary" of a summer spent in Tuscany, part of the time with the legendary Eleanora Duse. The poems evoke specific times and places; more importantly, they conjure up emotions, memories and myths associated with each place. Beginning in early summer, they move through the seasons, changing in verse-form and mood, always delighting in the sensuous qualities of language. J.G. Nicholls's translation makes the richness and subtlety of d'Annunzio's poetry accessible to the English-speaking reader, and his introduction illuminates the complex themes and structure of the work. He provides a full glossary of places and references.
Gabriele D'Annunzio was an Italian poet, writer, novelist, dramatist, and war hero, who went on to play a controversial role in Italian politics prior to the Fascist movement. J. G. Nichols is a poet and translator.