New and forthcoming

One Hundred Poets, One Poem Each

Peter MacMillan (and others)

A prize-winning translation of the most widely known and popular collection of Japanese poetry.

Hyakunin Isshu is the most famous and popular collection of Japanese poetry, and the first work of Japanese literature ever to be translated into English. Compiled in the fourteenth century, the book is a collection of one hundred waka poems (a precursor of haiku), dating back to the seventh century. It's had a huge influence on Japanese culture ever since it was first published, and is considered one of the three most important works of Japanese classical literature along with The Tale of Genji and Tales of Ise.

Three Russian Fairy Tales

Alexander Pushkin (and others)

Alexander Pushkin, Russia's greatest poet, was fascinated by Russia's folk history, adapting its fairy tales into captivating poetic versions. In the early twentieth century, the book illustrator Ivan Bilibin likewise fell under the spell of Old Russia, drawing on both folk motifs and art nouveau to produce beautiful illustrations to accompany Pushkin's poems. This irresistible new edition presents three of Pushkin's fairy tales - 'Tsar Saltan', 'A Fisherman and a Little Fish' and 'The Golden Cockerel' - in versions by the acclaimed translator Antony Wood, alongside Bilibin's sumptuous original illustrations. The result is an enchanting window into Russian poetry, fairy tales and magic.

Mancunia

Michael Symmons Roberts

Mancunia is both a real and an unreal city. In part, it is rooted in Manchester, but it is an imagined city too, a fallen utopia viewed from formal tracks, as from the train in the background of De Chirico’s paintings. In these poems we encounter a Victorian diorama, a bar where a merchant mariner has a story he must tell, a chimeric creature – Miss Molasses – emerging from the old docks. There are poems in honour of Mancunia’s bureaucrats: the Master of the Lighting of Small Objects, the Superintendent of Public Spectacles, the Co-ordinator of Misreadings. Metaphysical and lyrical, the poems in Michael Symmons Roberts’ seventh collection are concerned with why and how we ascribe value, where it resides and how it survives. Mancunia is – like More’s Utopia – both a no-place and an attempt at the good-place. It is occupied, liberated, abandoned and rebuilt. Capacious, disturbing and shape-shifting, these are poems for our changing times.

The Promised Land

André Naffis-Sahely

Flitting from the mud-soaked floors of Venice to the glittering, towering constructions of the Abu Dhabi of his childhood and early adulthood, from the 'disposable cities' composed of shanty towns and rough encampments which spring up wherever new resources are discovered to present-day London and North America, André Naffis-Sahely's bracingly plain-spoken first collection gathers portraits of promised lands and those who go in search of them: travellers, labourers, dreamers; the hopeful and the dispossessed. This is poetry as reportage, as much an act of memory as of sinuous, clear-eyed vision. As this arresting new poet has remarked elsewhere: 'I don't like poems that invent memories; I have enough of my own.'

Summer with Monika

Roger McGough (and others)

Summer with Monika is an honest and touching portrait of a romance, charting the progress of a love affair from the delicious intimacy of the honeymoon, with the milk bottles turning to cheese on the doorstep, through the stage of quarrels, jealousy, recriminations and boredom, to the point where love is as nice as a cup of tea in bed.

Re-issued for its 50th anniversary, Summer with Monika is a hidden gem of British love poetry featuring beautiful illustrations from Children's Laureate Chris Riddell.

Angel Hill

Michael Longley

A remote townland in County Mayo, Carrigskeewaun has been for nearly fifty years Michael Longley’s home-from-home, his soul-landscape. Its lakes and mountains, wild animals and flowers, its moody seas and skies have for decades lit up his poetry. Now they overflow into Angel Hill, his exuberant new collection. In addition, Longley has been exploring Lochalsh in the Western Highlands where his daughter the painter Sarah Longley now lives with her family. She has opened up for him her own soul-landscape with its peculiar shapes and intense colours. In Angel Hill the imaginations of poet and painter intermingle and two exacting wildernesses productively overlap. Love poems and elegies and heart-rending reflections on the Great War and the Northern Irish Troubles add further weight to Michael Longley’s outstanding eleventh collection. Angel Hill will undoubtedly delight this great poet’s many admirers.

Works and Days

Hesiod (and others)

A new verse translation of one of the foundational ancient Greek works by the award-winning poet Alicia Stallings.

The ancient Greeks revered Hesiod, believing he had beaten Homer in a singing contest and that after his dead body was thrown to sea, it was brought back by dolphins. His Works and Days is one of the most important early works of Greek poetry. Ostensibly written by the poet to chide his lazy brother, it recounts the story of Pandora's box and humanity's decline since the Golden Age, and can be read as a celebration of rural life and a hymn to work.

Motherland Fatherland Homelandsexuals

Patricia Lockwood

What if a deer did porn? Is it legal to marry a stuffed owl exhibit? Do men deserve to be hypnotized for their crimes? And what would the tit-pics of famous dead Americans Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson really look like? Motherland Fatherland Homelandsexuals is the only book that dares to answer these questions - or, at the very least, to come tantalisingly close before dancing mournfully away again, its pert rump twirling through the artificial night of the last great gorilla actor's costume.

Taking in a philosophically-minded Loch Ness Monster, a younger brother's military tours in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the autobiographical poem 'Rape Joke', Patricia Lockwood's second collection shows one of today's most original poets at her virtuosic best, combining a free-wheeling and surreal sense of humour on the surface with a deep seriousness and an intricate technical mastery lurking always just below it.

Penguin Modern Poets 4

Don Paterson (and others)

Other Ways to Leave the Room features the work of three of the most beloved and lauded poets currently at large. Between them, Kathleen Jamie, Don Paterson and Nick Laird write lyrical, luminous and often darkly witty poems about the rugged wildness of the Scottish landscape; about fatherhood; about whisky-drinking, alcohol abuse and tenement life; about sex, love and the pursuit of the spiritual; about childhood in the Ireland of the Troubles, and about the strange possibilities of the technological future. What all three have in common is an ability to combine observations of gritty real life with a sense of the mythical proportions always lurking just under the surface of the everyday.

The Penguin Modern Poets are succinct guides to the richness and diversity of contemporary poetry. Every volume brings together representative selections from the work of three poets now writing, allowing the curious reader and the seasoned lover of poetry to encounter the most exciting voices of our moment.

How Freakin’ Zeitgeist Are You?

Murray Lachlan Young

How Freakin’ Zeitgeist Are You? is the definitive collection of Murray Lachlan Young’s poems from 1994 to the present day.

It tracks his career as a writer and performer, from his arrival as a wide-eyed, twenty-something in London, through his sideways look in and around the music, fashion and film businesses, as well as a few observational works from what he now refers to as his ‘Cornwall years’. From his humorous and witty take on social phenomena to dark commentary on today’s society, Murray covers a wide range of topics from the weather, hair and machines to the UK festival culture, sex, men’s issues, pop music and God.

The book also contains sixteen of his original illustrations and several of the sketch poems he was commissioned to write through his hugely popular slots as poet-in-residence on BBC Radio 6 Music and Radio 4’s Saturday Live.

Anyone who has watched or listened to Murray perform will recognise the range of his work, from whimsical comedy and several darker pieces through satire into cosmology, theology and metaphysics. Though primarily written for the ear, with a radio listener in mind, his incurable addiction to rhyme is evident from the first page and the whole collection is designed to be read out loud and shared with friends.

So open it up, find the beat and enter the strange and marvellous world of Murray Lachlan Young.

Is That all You People Think About?

Gordon Gordon

‘I’m in here!’ yelled Mum.
Hide and seek was spoilt again.
We never found Dad.

The word ‘Haiku’ invokes images of misty mountains, running streams and falling leaves. But where are the haiku that reflect the modern world we live in? The real world of overflowing baths, train delays and Pierce Brosnan?

In this collection, you will find a haiku for every moment of modern life, all rendered in no more or less than 17 syllables.

Night Sky with Exit Wounds

Ocean Vuong

An extraordinary debut from a young Vietnamese American, Night Sky with Exit Wounds is a book of poetry unlike any other. Steeped in war and cultural upheaval and wielding a fresh new language, Vuong writes about the most profound subjects – love and loss, conflict, grief, memory and desire – and attends to them all with lines that feel newly-minted, graceful in their cadences, passionate and hungry in their tender, close attention: ‘…the chief of police/facedown in a pool of Coca-Cola./A palm-sized photo of his father soaking/beside his left ear.’ This is an unusual, important book: both gentle and visceral, vulnerable and assured, and its blend of humanity and power make it one of the best first collections of poetry to come out of America in years.

‘These are poems of exquisite beauty, unashamed of romance, and undaunted by looking directly into the horrors of war, the silences of history. One of the most important debut collections for a generation.’ Andrew McMillan

The Zoo of the New

Don Paterson (and others)

'So open it anywhere, then anywhere, then anywhere again. We're sure it won't be long before you find a poem that brings you smack into the newness and strangeness of the living present'

In The Zoo of the New, poets Don Paterson and Nick Laird have cast a fresh eye over more than five centuries of verse, from the English language and beyond. Above all, they have sought poetry that retains, in one way or another, a powerful timelessness: words with the thrilling capacity to make the time and place in which they were written, however distant and however foreign they may be, feel utterly here and now in the 21st Century.

This book stretches as far back as Sappho and as far forward as the recent award-winning work of Denise Riley, taking in poets as varied as Thomas Wyatt, Sylvia Plath, William Shakespeare, T. S. Eliot, Frank O'Hara and Gwendolyn Brooks along the way. Here, the mournful rubs shoulders with the celebratory; the skulduggerous and the foolish with the highfalutin; and tales of love, loss and war with a menagerie of animals and objects, from bee boxes to rubber boots, a suit of armour and a microscope.

Teeming with old favourites and surprising discoveries, this lovingly selected compendium is sure to win lifelong readers.

Adrian Mole: The Collected Poems

Sue Townsend

Mole Press - a brand new imprint of Penguin Books - is proud to announce the first publication of The Collected Poems of Adrian Mole to mark the author's 50TH birthday.

Featuring poems scattered over nearly thirty years of writing and salvaged from the diaries 'authored' by one Sue Townsend, this slim volume features more than thirty pieces of Adrian's unique art.

From his timeless first documented poem - The Tap - via classic odes to his muse, first and only true love Pandora (I adore ya), we follow Adrian's life in verse form. We not only witness his burgeoning political anger in works like Mrs Thatcher (Do you weep, Mrs Thatcher, do you weep?) but also see in later poems his merciless examination of the hollow shell of masculinity as well as documenting his declining libido in tragic pieces like To My Organ.

For the first time in a single volume, these are the collected poems of misunderstood intellectual and tortured poet Adrian Mole.

'It's really, really, really funny' David Walliams

'Wonderfully funny and sharp as knives' Sunday Times

'One of the great comic creations' Daily Mirror

'The funniest person in the world' Caitlin Moran

'I ruthlessly exploited Adrian. But he can't afford to sue me' Sue Townsend

James Merrill Poems

James Merrill

James Merrill once called his poetic works 'chronicles of love and loss', and in twenty books written over four decades he used the details of his life - comic and haunting, exotic and domestic - to shape a compelling, sometimes intensely moving, personal portrait. Sophisticated, witty and ironic, his poetry also engages passionately with topical issues - war, terrorism, political corruption, AIDS, climate change and the destruction of nature. An admirer of Wallace Stevens, Elizabeth Bishop and W. H. Auden, Merrill, like them, has left a legacy that will speak to readers for years to come.

Penguin's Poems for Weddings

Laura Barber (and others)

Now in paperback, a wonderful anthology of wedding poems, filled with surprising, curious, unorthodox and charming poems about love and the public commitment to love.

For the many thousands of readers who each year go through the complex mix of thrill and trauma that is the planning of a marriage ceremony, Laura Barber's anthology is the answer to a prayer, with a wonderfully generous and unusual selection of poems suitable for reading out loud, and which celebrate and encapsulate our deepest feelings in all their bewildering diversity.

Including verse by poets ranging from John Keats to Carol Ann Duffy and Walt Whitman to W. H. Auden, as well as many less familiar voices, this anthology offers numerous options for anyone about to read at the wedding of family or friends, or to celebrate their own.

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