An epic poem about the Second World War: Eisenhower pursues Hitler from D-Day to the fall of Berlin and visits Hell and Heaven.
Overlord is the first major poetic epic in the English language since Milton's Paradise Lost.
Written in blank verse, with a panoramic visionary sweep that embraces higher and lower worlds within a universalist scheme, it is a contemporary epic poem in the tradition of Homer's Iliad and Virgil's Aeneid. Drawing, as they do, on a single defining event for civilisation, it focuses on World War II and the American General Eisenhower's pursuit of Hitler and the fall of Berlin (our Troy); the battles and the suffering, and the hidden conflicts between Stalin, Roosevelt and Churchill, Eisenhower and Montgomery, and Hitler and his generals. All are handled with a Homeric mastery that moves easily between formal diplomacy and bitter antagonism. Eisenhower's visions of Hell and Heaven evoke Dante's Divine Comedy.
In dealing with these powerful forces, still operating in our own time, Overlord makes sense of the 20th century and gives a new understanding of the present - in particular of the alternative New World Orders that face us.
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He hits a pace, a tilt, that really carries the reader along...Everything comes as a subordinate clause to his dramatic momentum, a hand waving out of the express train window. ~ Ted Hughes, Poet Laureate
His poetic felicities include a poetic mix of Eliot, Pound and Blake; the judicious invention of his own psychological terms to guide his progress; an unafraid nakedness, linked to philosophic and scientific adventurousness; genuine visionary leanings and occasional lyric beauty. ~ Sebastian Barker, Past chairman of The Poetry Society
Nicholas Hagger writes with a rare intellectual passion. ~ Sir Laurens van der Post