‘Yes, it was be there or be square as, clad in the slum chic of the hipster, he issued the slang anthems of the zip age in the desperate esperanto of the bop. John Cooper Clarke: the name behind the hairstyle, the words walk in the grooves hacking through the hi-fi paradise of true luxury’
Punk. Poet. Pioneer. The Bard of Salford’s seminal collection is as scabrous, wry & vivid now as it was when first published over 25 years ago.
‘The godfather of British performance poetry’ Daily Telegraph
Prize-winning poet Ruth Padel is renowned as a guide to understanding today's poetry. Her much-loved 52 Ways of Looking at a Poem introduced the contemporary poetry scene and discussed individual poems. Her new book, invaluable for all who want to write as well as read poems, reveals the journey of thought, language and music within sixty more poems and also shows how poems fortify us on the journey of our lives, in a collection of essays written in elegant, accessible prose.
British poetry is in a wonderful state at present. Never have so many poets been saying so many interesting things in such lively, up-to-date ways. Yet many people feel shut out or know little about poetry and have no idea where to begin. In this groundbreaking book, Ruth Padel takes fifty-two of the poems she discussed in her newspaper column - a year's worth - and suggests ways of reading them.
The poems are by a wide range of living poets, on experiences we all share - love, sex, death, nature, history, war - which show how reading a poem can enhance everyone's life as powerfully and as pleasurably as reading novels or watching a film.