This article presents a mediacentric reading of the autobiographical-lyric (auto-lyric) sound structures of Ted Hughes's 1998 poetry collection Birthday Letters, which broke his decades-long silence on the controversies surrounding his life with and after Sylvia Plath. It explores how Hughes's poems of bereavement adapt the media logics of film, tape, record, and radio not only to understand trauma's complex psychology but also to textually remediate his lost connection with his beloved dead. Rendering Hughes's traumas audible by way of phonotextual analysis, this essay ultimately forwards an ear-sighted approach to poetry of trauma, wherein traumatic memories are often written down to be sounded out by the reading voice and heard—not seen—accordingly.

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