While at university Auden emerged as a promising poet. His early books include Poems (1930), The Orators (1932), The Dance of Death (1933) and Look Stranger! (1936). In collaboration with Christopher Isherwood he also wrote the plays The Dog Beneath the Skin (1935) and The Ascent of F6 (1936).
In January 1937 Auden went to Spain to support the I fighting in the Spanish Civil War. He visited Barcelona and Valencia where he wrote articles on the war for the New Statesman. When he returned to England he was active in the campaign in favour of the Popular Front government.
Auden's poem, Spain 1937, caused an impact on European left-wing intellectuals. In later years, Auden rejected his Marxist past and described the poem as "trash" and that he was "ashamed to have written."
In 1947 Auden became an American citizen. He completely rejected his left-wing past and his post-war work reflected his growing interest in religion. This included The Age of Anxiety (1947), Nones (1951), The Shield of Achilles (1955) The Old Man's Road (1956), Homage to Clio (1960), About this House (1967),City Walls and Other Poems (1969), American Graffiti (1971) and Epistle to a Godson (1972).
Wystan Hugh Auden died in 1973.