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The Best British Poetry 2013 By Ahren Warner

The Best British Poetry 2013 by Ahren Warner

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The Best British Poetry has rapidly become the UK's most important poetry anthology. Offering readers and students a comprehensive guide to the year's best poets. The book focusses on poems and not poets and chooses widely from the UK's print and online magazines which are scoured by the editorial team each year.

The Best British Poetry 2013 Summary

The Best British Poetry 2013 by Ahren Warner

"When I became a bird, Lord, nothing could not stop me.

The air feathered

as I knelt

by my open window for the charm -

black on gold,

last star of the dawn."

- From 'Bird' by Liz Berry

The Best British Poetry has rapidly become one of the UK's most noted collections. Now in its third edition, Salt Publishing is proud to present this thoroughly inspirational selection from this year's best poets.

Offering a completely comprehensive guide for enthusiastic readers and students, this anthology focuses on poems, not poets. Carefully chosen from a wide range of the UK's best print and online magazines, these poems spring to life on the page, breathtakingly original and varied in tone, illuminating, moving and unexpected. From big names such as David Harsent, Alan Jenkins, Ruth Padel and Sean O'Brien, to the wonderful work of Leontia Flynn, Mark Waldron and Charlotte Geater, this collection speaks for itself.

The Best British Poetry 2013 concludes with just short biographical details and comments from each of sixty-eight featured poets, lending it a personal and revealing touch.

A must for the bookshelf of the poetry amateur and aficionado alike.

The Best British Poetry 2013 Reviews

A positive introduction to contemporary writing in Britain - a far wider range of styles and schools (and both the famous and lesser known, both the established magazines and the new) than is customary in British publications.

-- Rob A. Mackenzie * Surroundings *

It's an exciting thing to hold in your hands an impression of the best of something as it is right now, which is why Salt's new series under the editorship of Roddy Lumsden is so welcome and, perhaps, overdue ... This is more than a collection of poetry, it is a resource. Each poem is accompanied by notes about the writer, and the writer's notes about his or her poem. Indeed the end notes are so comprehensive they take up about a quarter of the book.

-- Barrie Llewelyn * New Welsh Review *

The Best British Poetry 2012 is something that those with an interest in contemporary British poetry really ought to have in their possession.

-- Christopher Crawford * Body *

This is an excellent collection, imaginatively and fairly edited, making it easily one of the books that every reader of poetry wanting to know about new British and Irish poetry should own. I already look forward to the 2012 edition.

-- Todd Swift * Eyewear *

About Ahren Warner

Born in 1986, Ahren Warner grew up in Lincolnshire before moving to London. His first collection, Confer (Bloodaxe, 2011), was both a PBS Recommendation and shortlisted in the Forward Prizes. He was awarded an Eric Gregory Award in 2010 and an Arts Foundation Fellowship in 2012. Ahren's second collection of poems, Pretty, is published in June 2013 and is a PBS Recommendation. He is poetry editor of Poetry London. Roddy Lumsden (born 1966) is a Scottish poet, who was born in St Andrews. He has published five collections of poetry, a number of chapbooks and a collection of trivia, as well as editing a generational anthology of British and Irish poets of the 1990s and 2000s, Identity Parade. He lives in London where he teaches for The Poetry School. He died in January 2020. Emily Berry's debut poetry collection Dear Boy (Faber & Faber, 2013) won the Forward Prize for Best First Collection and the Hawthornden Prize. She is a contributor to The Breakfast Bible (Bloomsbury, 2013), a compendium of breakfasts. She is currently working towards a PhD in Creative and Critical Writing at the University of East Anglia. James Brookes was born in 1986 and grew up in rural Sussex, a few minutes' walk from Shelley's boyhood home of Field Place. He received a major Eric Gregory Award in 2009 and a Hawthornden International Writer's Fellowship in 2011. He has published a pamphlet, The English Sweats, with Pighog Press and is currently the Williams Librarian at Cranleigh School in Surrey, where also he teaches. Sins of the Leopard is his first full collection. John Burnside was born in 1955 in Dunfermline, Scotland. He studied English and European Languages at Cambridge College of Arts and Technology. A former computer software engineer, he has been a freelance writer since 1996. His first collection of poetry, The Hoop, was published in 1988 and won a Scottish Arts Council Book Award. Other poetry collections include Common Knowledge (1991), Feast Days (1992), winner of the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize, and The Asylum Dance (2000), winner of the Whitbread Poetry Award and shortlisted for both the Forward Poetry Prize (Best Poetry Collection of the Year) and the T. S. Eliot Prize. The Light Trap (2001) was also shortlisted for the T. S. Eliot Prize. Melanie Challenger's first collection of poems, Galatea (Salt Publishing: 2006), received the Society of Authors' Eric Gregory Award and nomination for the Forward Poetry Prize for Best First Collection. She is Creative Fellow at the Centre for the Evolution of Cultural Diversity at University College London, and Associate Artist at Cambridge University's Institute of Astronomy. She lives in the Scottish highlands. Kayo Chingonyi was born in Zambia in 1987 and came to the UK in 1993. His poems have been published in a range of magazines and anthologies including The Best British Poetry 2011 and The Salt Book Of Younger Poets. He also travels regularly across the UK, and internationally, to give readings. His work has been described as 'full of contrast, deftly managed with a buoyant and musical hand' (Poetry International Web) John Clegg grew up in Cambridge and currently lives in Durham, where he is completing a PhD on the Eastern European influence in contemporary poetry. A selection of his poetry was included in The Salt Book of Younger Poets (2010). David Constantine, born 1944 in Salford, has published several volumes of poetry, a novel and four collections of short stories - Back at the Spike (1994), Under the Dam (2005), The Shieling (2009) and Tea at the Midland (2012). He is an editor and translator of Hoelderlin, Goethe, Kleist and Brecht. He was the winner of the 2010 BBC National Short Story Award and the 2013 Frank O'Connor Award. Philip Gross is a writer of many parts - from prize-winning poetry to teenage novels of high suspense and unsettling depths. Son of a wartime refugee from Estonia and a Cornish schoolmaster's daughter, his work explores borderlines - between childhood and adult life, between fantasy and reality. He has two grown-up children and a grandson, and lives in Penarth with his wife Zelie. He has led writing workshops in schools for twenty years, and is Professor of Creative Writing at Glamorgan University. Edward Mackay studied History and English at Oxford University, lives in east London where he also runs a mediation charity. His poetry was shortlisted for the inaugural Picador Poetry Prize (2011), commended in the Emerge Escalator competition (2010) and shortlisted for an Eric Gregory Award (2009). He has been widely published in magazines and anthologies - this is his first solo publication. David Marriott was born in Nottingham 1963 of Jamaican parentage and was educated at the University of Sussex. He has taught there and currently teaches at the University of California, Santa Cruz. He has written many articles on poetics and is the author of On Black Men published 2000 by the University Presses of Edinburgh, and Columbia, New York; and Letters to Langston published 2006 by the University Press of Rutgers, New Jersey. Incognegro is his first book of poetry. Chris McCabe was born in Liverpool in 1977. His poetry collections are The Hutton Inquiry and Zeppelins. He has recorded a CD with The Poetry Archive and written a play Shad Thames, Broken Wharf, which was performed at the London Word Festival and subsequently published by Penned in the Margins in 2010. He works as a Librarian at The Poetry Library, London, and teaches for The Poetry School. John McCullough was born in Watford in 1978. His poetry has appeared in publications including Poetry London, The Rialto, The Guardian, Magma and London Magazine. He teaches literature and creative writing at the Open University and the University of Sussex and has a Ph.d from Sussex on rhetoric and friendship in English Renaissance writing. He lives in Brighton. HELEN MORT was born in Sheffield and grew up in Chesterfield. She has published two poetry collections, Division Street (2013), and No Map Could Show Them (2016), and one novel, Black Car Burning (2019). Her short story collection, Exire, was published by Wrecking Ball and she co-edited One For the Road: Pubs and Poetry (Smith-Doorstop) with Stuart Maconie. She teaches creative writing at Manchester Metropolitan University. Ruth Padel is a prize-winning poet, Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and Zoological Society of London, formerly Chair of the Poetry Society and currently Resident Poet at Christ's College, Cambridge. She has published seven collections of poetry, most recently Darwin: A Life in Poems. Her non-fiction includes a nature/travel book on wild tigers, much acclaimed for its description of Asian forest landscapes from Bhutan to Sumatra. The first section of The Poem and the Journey, her most recent book on reading contemporary poetry, turns on the landscape in which we find our first identity, and is prefaced by Viola's question in Twelfth Night, 'What country, friends, is this?' Website: Pascale Petit has published four poetry collections including The Huntress and The Zoo Father, which were both shortlisted for the T. S. Eliot Prize and were books of the year in the Times Literary Supplement. Her latest collection is The Treekeeper's Tale (Seren, 2008) and, forthcoming from Seren in 2010, What the Water Gave Me - Poems after Frida Kahlo. The Poetry Book Society and Arts Council named her as one of the Next Generation Poets in 2004. She is widely travelled, including to coast redwood parks in California, the Venezuelan Amazon, Mexico, Kazakhstan, Nepal and China, where in 2007-8 she took part in the Yellow Mountain Poetry Festival on Huangshan in Anhui Province. She was the Royal Literary Fund Fellow at Middlesex University 2007- 9 and tutors for The Poetry School and Tate Modern. Website: Fiona Sampson has published fourteen books - poetry, philosophy of language and books on writing process - of which the most recent are Common Prayer (Carcanet, 2007) and Writing: Self and Reflexivity (Macmillan, 2005). Her awards include the Newdigate Prize; 'Trumpeldor Beach' was short-listed for the 2006 Forward Prize; and she has been widely translated, with eight books in translation, including Travel Diary, awarded the Zlaten Prsten (Macedonia). She contributes regularly to The Guardian, The Irish Times and other publications; and is the editor of Poetry Review. Camellia Stafford was born in Warwickshire. She read English Literature and Language at King's College London and has an MA from The Courtauld Institute of Art. Her debut pamphlet another pretty colour, another break for air is published by tall lighthouse. Camellia divides her time between Warwickshire and London. George Szirtes was born in Budapest in 1948, and came to England with his family after the 1956 Hungarian Uprising. He was educated in England, training as a painter, and has always written in English. In recent years he has worked as a translator of Hungarian literature, producing editions of such writers as Otto Orban, Zsuzsa Rakovszky and Agnes Nemes Nagy. He co-edited Bloodaxe's Hungarian anthology The Colonnade of Teeth. His Bloodaxe poetry books are The Budapest File (2000); An English Apocalypse (2001); Reel (2004), winner of the T.S. Eliot Prize; New & Collected Poems (2008) and The Burning of the Books and other poems (2009), shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize 2009. Bloodaxe has also published John Sears' critical study Reading George Szirtes (2008). Szirtes lives in Norfolk and teaches at the University of East Anglia. Mark Waldron's first book, The Brand New Dark was published by Salt Publishing in 2008. His work appears in Identity Parade, New British and Irish Poets published by Bloodaxe in 2010. He lives in east London with his wife and son.

Table of Contents

  • Foreword by Roddy Lumsden
  • Introduction by Ahren Warner
  • Rachael Allen
  • Sunday
  • Emily Berry
  • Arlene's House
  • Liz Berry
  • Bird
  • Patrick Brandon
  • The Spirit of Geometry
  • James Brookes
  • Amen to Artillery
  • Sam Buchan-Watts
  • Nose to Tail
  • Hayley Buckland
  • Supper
  • Harry Burke
  • realspace
  • John Burnside
  • At the Entering of the New Year
  • Matthew Caley
  • My Beloved
  • Niall Campbell
  • On Eriskay
  • Ian Cartland
  • Six Winters
  • Melanie Challenger
  • The Daffodil
  • Kayo Chingonyi
  • from calling a spade a spade
  • John Clegg
  • Figtree
  • David Constantine
  • Foxes, rain
  • Emily Critchley
  • Some Curious Things II
  • Claire Crowther
  • Trompe l'oeil
  • Francine Elena
  • Ode to a 1980s Baton Twirling World Champion
  • Menna Elfyn
  • Babysitting in the Crematorium
  • Carco yn y Crem
  • Leontia Flynn
  • MacNeice's Mother
  • Charlotte Geater
  • avoid using the word 'pussy'
  • Dai George
  • Seven Rounds with Bill's Ghost
  • Matthew Gregory
  • A Room in Taiwan, 2010
  • Philip Gross
  • The Works
  • David Harsent
  • Effaced
  • Stuart Henson
  • The Builder
  • Wayne Holloway-Smith
  • Poem in Which
  • Sarah Howe
  • Scrying: turpentine
  • A.B. Jackson
  • from Natural History
  • Andrew Jamison
  • What I'll Say When I Get Back
  • Alan Jenkins
  • Sea-Music
  • Chris McCabe
  • The Alchemist
  • John McCullough
  • !
  • Patrick McGuinness
  • Doors and Windows of Wallonia
  • Edward Mackay
  • Afterword
  • Andrew McMillan
  • if it wasn't for the nights
  • Kona Macphee
  • Mind
  • Allison McVety
  • Finlandia
  • D.S. Marriott
  • The Redeemers
  • Glyn Maxwell
  • Christmas Seven Times Seven
  • Christopher Middleton
  • The Ghosting Of Paul Celan
  • Kate Miller
  • Salvage
  • Helen Mort
  • Admit you feel like all the ice skates in Brazil
  • Alastair Noon
  • From 'Earth Records', 27
  • Richard O'Brien
  • So Much Will Waste
  • Sean O'Brien
  • Thirteen O'Clocks
  • Richard Osmond
  • The Well
  • Ruth Padel
  • from The Okazaki Fragments
  • Rebecca Perry
  • Pow
  • Pascale Petit
  • Sainte-Chapelle
  • Heather Phillipson
  • Rumination on 25mm of Cotton
  • Jody Porter
  • Girl at the World's End
  • Kate Potts
  • Thirty-three
  • Sam Riviere
  • No Touching
  • Robin Robertson
  • Finding the Keys
  • Sophie Robinson
  • nsfw
  • Charlotte Runcie
  • Lothian Road, Saturday Night
  • Declan Ryan
  • From Alun Lewis
  • Fiona Sampson
  • The Revenant
  • Camellia Stafford
  • I will stay at home and talk on the telephone
  • Chloe Stopa-Hunt
  • The Paris Poems
  • Michael Symmons Roberts
  • After a Line by George Seferis
  • George Szirtes
  • Songlines
  • Helen Tookey
  • Portrait of a Young Woman
  • Tim Turnbull
  • Fetish
  • Mark Waldron
  • Collaboration
  • Nerys Williams
  • The Thirteen Club
  • Contributors' Notes and Comments
  • List of Magazines
  • Acknowledgements

Additional information

The Best British Poetry 2013 by Ahren Warner
Used - Very Good
Salt Publishing
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
This is a used book - there is no escaping the fact it has been read by someone else and it will show signs of wear and previous use. Overall we expect it to be in very good condition, but if you are not entirely satisfied please get in touch with us

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