Cover image for Ted and I : a brother's memoir
Title:
Ted and I : a brother's memoir
Author:
Hughes, Gerald, 1920-2016, author, illustrator.
Edition:
First U.S. edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martin's Press, 2014.
Physical Description:
xx, 217 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
Summary:
"[Examines the] shared childhood between Gerald Hughes and his younger brother Ted, one of the finest and best-loved poets of modern times ... Hughes brings alive a period when the two brothers would roam the countryside, camping, making fires, pitching tents, hunting rabbits, rats, wood pigeon, and stoats ... Gerald describes watching his brother evolving into a great poet and describes them continuing their relationship, even when many miles apart"--
General Note:
"First published in Great Britain [in 2012] by The Robson Press, an imprint of Biteback Publishing Ltd"--Title page verso.
Language:
English
ISBN:
9781250045270
Format :
Book

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PR6058.U348 H84 2014 Adult Non-Fiction Biography
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Summary

Summary

Anecdotal and immensely charming, Ted and I is a unique portrait of a shared childhood between Gerald Hughes and his younger brother Ted, one of the finest and best-loved poets of modern times. Ted's love for Gerald was probably one of the most enduring and sustaining forces in his life. Hughes brings alive a period when the two brothers would roam the countryside, camping, making fires, pitching tents, hunting rabbits, rats, wood pigeon and stoats. Ted's fascination with all wildlife subsequently fed directly into his sublime poetry. Gerald describes watching his brother evolving into a great poet and describes them continuing their relationship, even when many miles apart.

Containing a great many unique and never-before seen family photographs of Ted Hughes, as well as unpublished material, this extraordinary memoir is an achingly poignant tale of childhood and youth and togetherness; the tenderness of brotherly love and the development of a poetic mind as Hughes went into the air force, on to Cambridge where he published his first poems and met Sylvia Plath, before settling in Devon with Sylvia, where their children were born. Ted and I also features a foreword by Gerald's niece Frieda Hughes, the daughter of Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath and herself a well-known painter and poet.


Author Notes

Gerald Hughes was born in Hebden Bridge, England on September 7, 1920. He left school at the age of 14 to work in the family factory. During World War II, he served as a flight mechanic in the RAF. After the war, he decided to move to Australia where he worked as a mechanic for the Australian National Airway and then as sales manager in an engineering company.

He was best known as the brother of the poet Ted Hughes and an important influence on his work. In 2012, Gerald Hughes wrote an autobiography entitled Ted and I: A Brother's Memoir. He died on August 6, 2016 at the age of 95.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Gerald Hughes is Ted Hughes' older brother. Ted, Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom, recipient of the Order of Merit, buried alongside T.S. Eliot in Westminster Abbey, is world renowned. Frieda Hughes, Ted's eldest child from his notorious marriage to Sylvia Plath, wrote the foreword to her uncle's warm memoir. With loving attention, Gerald dwells on their early life in rural Yorkshire. They had loving parents and a generous extended family who survived WWI and lived relatively well during the Great Depression. The brothers, marvelously close, had a wide world to roam as they hunted, fished, and observed wildlife. They took delight in building models and flying kites. Ted excelled in school. Even more interesting than Gerald's memories of Ted are stories from his time as an aircraft mechanic in the RAF, serving on remote airfields in North Africa. Not long after the war, Gerald immigrated to Australia. He records Ted's persistent efforts to get him to return to England to join in various idylls, namely farming schemes of varying success. This is a modest, heartfelt book.--Autrey, Michael Copyright 2014 Booklist


Publisher's Weekly Review

Hughes's understated memoir chronicles his relationship with his younger brother, Ted, the esteemed British poet and husband to Sylvia Plath. Gerald tenderly sketches an idyllic childhood in rural Yorkshire, where the two boys roamed the hills and skipped rocks on the river as "life proceeded at a pleasant pace." In Gerald's account, Ted had a sense for language from a young age. "Fires can get up and bite you," he said after burning his hands on a flame. Gerald and Ted were separated in 1942 when Gerald joined the British Army and was dispatched to North Africa. He moved to Australia following the war, and his relationship with Ted unfolded mostly through letters. He also never met Plath, though they corresponded often after her marriage to Ted. Gerald recounts these years from a considerable distance, focusing on Ted's devotion to Plath and her affection toward him and their children. Writing of Plath's suicide, he emphasizes Ted's concern for his wife's health and his attempts to repair their marriage before her death. Gerald's pride in Ted's accomplishments is clear, as is his devotion to preserving his brother's memory. This account does not contain any startling revelations, but Gerald's fond recollections may give critics and fans new insight into a famed poet's work. (Dec.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Table of Contents

Frieda Hughes
Acknowledgementsp. ix
Forewordp. xi
Prefacep. xix
Part I Childhood
Chapter 1 Hebden Bridgep. 3
Chapter 2 Early Daysp. 19
Chapter 3 Growing Upp. 45
Chapter 4 Mexboroughp. 65
Part II The War Years
Chapter 5 Squadron Lifep. 83
Chapter 6 Home Sweet Homep. 111
Part III Keeping in Touch
Chapter 7 Cambridge and Tedp. 131
Chapter 8 Sylviap. 141
Chapter 9 Two of a Kindp. 151
Chapter 10 Break-upp. 163
Chapter 11 Family Visitsp. 183
Chapter 12 Poet Laureatep. 199
Notebookp. 215
Picture Creditsp. 217