Sarah Corbett
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<p>&quot;Poetry as white-knuckle ride&quot; is how <em>Poetry Wales</em> described Sarah Corbett&rsquo;s debut, <em>The Red Wardrobe</em>. Her eagerly-awaited second collection, <em>The Witch Bag</em>, is as powerful as its predecessor, and is sure to cement Corbett&rsquo;s reputation as...
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Vuyelwa Carlin
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<p>Vuyelwa Carlin has established a reputation as a highly distinctive stylist. Published internationally and instantly recognisable, her poems feature an intricate, mosaic-like technique.</p><p><em>Marble Sky</em>, her third collection, is in three varied sections. It opens with &rsquo;Bottles of Blood&rsquo...
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Paul Groves
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<p>In Paul Groves&rsquo;s fourth book, which consolidates his reputation as one of the most able and consistent poets of his generation, we encounter such unlikely stablemates as Rudolf Hess, Virginia Woolf, Dylan Thomas, and Otto von Bismarck. It ends with &rsquo;The Orthodox Chapel of St. Dyfrig&rsquo;, an anagrammatical tour...
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Sheenagh Pugh
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<p>Lying and truth-telling are a matter of choice; our innate capacity for mendacity is the source of all story-telling. The title poem poem sets the thematic tone for this collection which explores the interface between fiction and reality.</p><p>In &#39;Fanfic&#39;, Pugh travels into cyberspace where devoted fans...
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Heavens Gate, Tony Curtis
Tony Curtis
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<p>Heaven&rsquo;s Gate is the eighth collection for Seren by one of Wales&rsquo; best poets. Formally astute, subtle and persuasive in tone, evincing enviable clarity and insight, these poems address subject matter as diverse as forest fires in California, an eclipse recalled from childhood, and a World War One battlefield. Most...
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Douglas Houston
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<p>A wry, singular wit, an astringent honesty, and a virtuoso use of traditional forms characterise Douglas Houston&rsquo;s new book. At its (broken) heart is the not-uncommon crisis of the break-up of a marriage. Houston spins a sharp series of villanelles on the subject, at once poignant and merciless. This is poetry with an ironic...
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Hilary Llewellyn-Willians
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<p><em>Hummadruz</em> brings together Hilary Llewellyn-Williams&rsquo;s first two collections, the long-absent <em>The Tree Calendar</em> (1987) and <em>Book of Shadows</em> (1990). The former includes her reputation-making title sequence of poems reflecting on the Celtic calendar, in which each month...
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Peter Finch
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<p>In <em>Food</em> the multi-talented and endlessly inventive Peter Finch keenly observes the dark forces that afflict us and then relentlessly skewers them with a quick wit, or twists form to give alternative versions, inflicting a random beauty on the stale or predictable.</p><p>He fearlessly lampoons the cliches...
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Fiona Sampson
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<p>Surviving a murder attempt generates the clarity, compression and pure celebratory drive of this book&rsquo;s title sequence of fourteen syllabic sonnets. These form the spinal cord of the entire collection, from which nerve endings reach out into a dizzying range of poetic matter, while retaining the book&rsquo;s essential...
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Samantha Wynne Rhydderch
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<p>Samantha Wynne Rhydderch&#39;s intense, uncompromising style recalls the confessional poets but her vivid narratives often conjure dark personas: men on the edge of breakdown or women in the midst of ecstasy.</p><p>The poet&rsquo;s fascination with the ferocious and marginal lead her to daring risks with language. This...
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Jean Earle
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<p><em>The Bed of Memory</em> was shortlisted for the 2002 Arts Council of Wales Book of the Year Award. These poems are informed by layers of memory, but never weighed down by them.</p><p>Newcomers will appreciate the accessible style and the universal themes touched upon while even those familiar with her work will...
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Don Rodgers
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<p>Playful, experimental, intense, ironic, these strikingly original poems by Don Rodgers are evidence of a passionate sensibility that delights in a vocabulary as sumptuous as the gardens he writes about. A cool honesty, quiet humour and a compassionate tenderness towards his subjects are hallmarks of his style.</p>
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Ruth Bidgood
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<p>A sense of mystery and mortality infuses these beautiful poems by Ruth Bidgood. Her deep engagement with the landscape and history of her part of Wales is matched by a metaphysical questioning as to the purpose and meaning of experience.</p><p>The voices that she invokes are often the &rsquo;unremembered&rsquo; ones: a...
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Frances Williams
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<p>The poems in Wild Blue are the product of a restless and inventive intelligence. Capable of ruminating with grace and flair on such diverse personalities as Isaac Newton and Elvis Presley, Williams moves confidently between the metaphysical and the modern, combining a delight in abstract ideas with sensuous physicality. This new...
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Owen Sheers
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<p><em>The Blue Book</em> is Owen Sheers&#39; first poetry collection.</p><p>From recollections of a return to Fiji, to sharper memories of an adolescence in a rural town in Wales; from dark ruminations on farm life to tender and unconventional love poems. Owen Sheers has a talent for visual imagery, a flair for...
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Catherine Fisher
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<p>The fate of an Italian icon damaged by floods, a Victorian skeleton, and a Vampire Ballet are amongst the many unusual subjects of the poems in this collection by Catherine Fisher. Lyrical grace combined with a sharp eye for imagery and a precise use of language are her hallmarks. Her themes are history, religion, and distinctively for...
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Paul Groves
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<p>Paul Groves&rsquo;s first volume confirms the promise which has marked him out as one of the most engaging poetic voices of recent years. Crystalline, deft, and exhilaratingly ironic, these poems deserve a wide audience. Those who are not already familiar with Paul Groves&rsquo;s well-crafted verse will not be disappointed by this...
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Eros and Thanatos, paul groves
Paul Groves
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<p>Sex and Death are the dominant themes of this provocative collection. With precise formal elegance and ironic flair Groves expertly dissects the angst of contemporary man. Groves&rsquo; territory is a no-man&rsquo;s land between convention and perversion: a man is driven wild by a woman putting on her clothes; a woman tries to...
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John Powell Ward
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<p>Ward&rsquo;s poems have a bracing freshness. He is extremely aware of the basis of language, of the alphabet as an abstract, symbolic and sacred presence, and he is wary of pinning down experience with it. His poems are as carefully composed for sound as music; philosophically they are open and searching. Ward stands persona and...
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Mike Jenkins
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<p><em>Red Landscapes</em> collects together the two major strands of Mike Jenkins&rsquo; poetry: beautiful love lyrics to his wife and family, and the radical social and political poems which spring from his socialism. Although Jenkins has written some of the best love poems of recent decades he is best known for his biting...
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Desmond Graham
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<p>The tightrope walker in the cover painting by Macke is symbolic of the author&rsquo;s point of view in this collection of poems. It is a humorous acknowledgement of the precarious position of the artist in our times, and a hint at the poet&rsquo;s predilection for balancing both personal and public concerns. The former are...
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Sheenagh Pugh
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<p>Sheenagh Pugh&rsquo;s poems continue to entertain and delight her many admirers. In <em>Stonelight</em>, her ninth collection, the keynote is celebration.</p><p>The opening section includes a moving series called &rsquo;Arctic Chart&rsquo; which commemorates the various people (and one ship) who gave...
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Tony Conran
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<p>This &#39;Collected Public Poems and Gifts&#39; illustrates the way in which the Welsh language tradition of composition for specific occasions - weddings, funerals, births, historical public events - has influenced Tony Conran for forty years. An acclaimed translator from Welsh, Conran has adopted styles, forms and genres to...
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Deryn Rees-Jones
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<p><em>Signs Round a Dead Body</em> is the eagerly awaited follow-up to Deryn Rees-Jones&rsquo;s widely acclaimed first collection, <em>The Memory Tray</em>. Her humour, sharp technique and preoccupation with the dilemmas of women are as apparent as ever, but there is now a more intense personal focus.</p>...
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