Fleur Adcock (Author)
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DescriptionFleur Adcock is one of Britain's most accomplished poets. Her poised, ironic poems are tense and tightly controlled as well as shrewdly laconic, and often chilling as she unmasks the deceptions of love or unravels family lives. Disarmingly conversational in style, they are remarkable for their psychological insight and their unsentimental, mischievously casual view of personal relationships. Born in New Zealand, she has explored questions of identity and rootedness throughout her work, both in relation to her personal allegiances to her native and adopted countries as well as her family history, whose long-dead characters she brings to life. She has also written movingly of birth, death and bereavement, and has tackled political issues with honest indignation and caustic wit. This first Collected edition of her poetry replaces her Selected Poems, with the addition of work from her later Oxford collections The Incident Book, Time-Zones and Looking Back. All her most celebrated poems are here, from the highly entertaining 'Against Coupling', 'Smokers For Celibacy' and 'The Prize-Winning Poem' to modern classics such as 'The Ex-Queen Amongst the Astronomers' and 'Things' - as well as the notorious one about kissing John Prescott... She has since published five later collections with Bloodaxe.
April 27, 2000
6.1 X 0.8 X 9.1 inches | 1.2 pounds
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About the Author
Fleur Adcock writes about men and women, childhood, identity, roots and rootlessness, memory and loss, animals and dreams, as well as our interactions with nature and place. Her poised, ironic poems are remarkable for their wry wit, conversational tone and psychological insight, unmasking the deceptions of love or unravelling family lives. Born in New Zealand in 1934, she spent the war years in England, returning with her family to New Zealand in 1947. She emigrated to Britain in 1963, working as a librarian in London until 1979. In 1977-78 she was writer-in-residence at Charlotte Mason College of Education, Ambleside. She was Northern Arts Literary Fellow in 1979-81, living in Newcastle, becoming a freelance writer after her return to London. She received an OBE in 1996, and the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry in 2006 for Poems 1960-2000 (Bloodaxe Books, 2000). Fleur Adcock published three pamphlets with Bloodaxe: Below Loughrigg (1979), Hotspur (1986) and Meeting the Comet (1988), as well as her translations of medieval Latin lyrics, The Virgin & the Nightingale (1983). She also published two translations of Romanian poets with Oxford University Press, Orient Express by Grete Tartler (1989) and Letters from Darkness by Daniela Crasnaru (1994). All her other collections were published by Oxford University Press until they shut down their poetry list in 1999, after which Bloodaxe published her collected poems Poems 1960-2000 (2000), followed by Dragon Talk (2010), Glass Wings (2013), The Land Ballot (2015), Hoard (2017) and The Mermaid's Purse (2021). Poems 1960-2000 and Hoard are Poetry Book Society Special Commendations while Glass Wings is a Poetry Book Society Recommendation. In October 2019 Fleur Adcock was presented with the New Zealand Prime Minister's Award for Literary Achievement in Poetry 2019 by the Rt Hon Jacinda Ardern.