To help the season along a little, I thought about the poets as though they were fine wines. What sort of wines would they be, with what sort of characteristics? Some of the following I found in a book when browsing. I cannot recall writing them, or why I might have done so, but I am happy on the strength of the crossings-out and redrafting, that they are, in fact, mine - and not infringing someone's copyright! A very happy, imaginary Christmas to you all.
A strong, no-nonsense spirit with a distinctive, peaty flavour.
A somewhat grandiloquent wine, at times having more the characteristics of a slightly sticky liqueur. Ideal for the grand occasion, though be warned that this fine, slightly hallucinatory drink, has suggestions both of majesty and rebellion in its heady bouquet.
An honest, slightly gritty wine that requires a serious meat dish to release its full authority.
The product of a robust grape that thrives in either of two soils, the one resulting in a refreshingly wild and unambiguous flavour, the other in a cloud of hints and associations.
W. H. Auden
A serious taste beneath a lively, jovial bouquet. A wine for either public or private occasions.
W. S. Graham
The punch with a punch. The first draught may be totally befuddling, but eventually - probably a day or two later - a cold clarity will hit. And you will never forget that you drank!
One for the connoisseur, having in both taste and bouquet many associations to be enjoyed by the acquired palate.
A severe wine with an enduring, uncomplicated flavour. A happy complement to simple fare.
Edith Sitwell once referred to this wine as "thick and uncouth", which is strange, considering its allusive and tantalising nature. Perfect with a light meal.
A traditional wine, though with more than a touch of the free spirit. Ideal for the picnic hamper on a hot, sunny day, or to accompany a Mediterranean-style meal. A wine for lovers everywhere.
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