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Three days after D-Day, Keith Douglas, a tank commander in the Sherwood Rangers and probably the finest poet of World War Two, was killed by a shell burst in a field overlooking the Normandy village of St Pierre.

It was death that Douglas, a veteran of the desert campaign, anticipated in poems, such as Simplify Me When I'm Dead, written even before the experience of battle.

Sean Street retraces Douglas' last movements in an attempt to understand a soldier-poet 'by distance simplified'.

Also taking part are the poets JC Hall, Anne Stevenson and Tim Kendall, as well as Douglas' biographer Desmond Graham, Stuart Hills of the Sherwood Rangers and archive recordings of Douglas' last girlfriend, Betty Jesse, his comrade John Bethell-Fox and the Padre who buried him.

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20041226

Three days after D-Day, Keith Douglas, a tank commander in the Sherwood Rangers and probably the finest poet of World War Two, was killed by a shell burst in a field overlooking the Normandy village of St Pierre.

It was death that Douglas, a veteran of the desert campaign, anticipated in poems, such as Simplify Me When I'm Dead, written even before the experience of battle.

Sean Street retraces Douglas' last movements in an attempt to understand a soldier-poet 'by distance simplified'.

Also taking part are the poets JC Hall, Anne Stevenson and Tim Kendall, as well as Douglas' biographer Desmond Graham, Stuart Hills of the Sherwood Rangers and archive recordings of Douglas' last girlfriend, Betty Jesse, his comrade John Bethell-Fox and the Padre who buried him.