Since 1609, when they were first published, Shakespeare’s sonnets have fascinated readers, both with the depth of the poet’s insight into the variety of love and the passage time and with the mysteries of the beautiful Young Man, the Rival Poet and the Dark Lady. This volume presents all 154 sonnets, with a brief introduction.
The Poetry of Lewis Carroll
As well as the famous ‘Hunting of the Snark’ and verses such as ‘The Mock Turtle’s Song’ from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, this little volume brings together less familiar poems from the master of nonsense and wordplay, including ‘Hiawatha’s Photographing’, ‘The Crocodile’ and ‘Phantasmagoria’.
The Poetry of Edgar Allan Poe
Although famous now for his Gothic horror tales, Edgar Allan Poe (1809–1849) was, first and foremost, a poet: The Raven and Other Poems brought him fame – but not fortune – when it was published in 1845. This collection covers the full range of Poe’s poetry, and includes a selection of prose poems.
The Essential Poetry Collection
Best Loved Works from our Greatest Poets
From John Donne, through the great poets of the Romantic era – Wordsworth, Keats and Shelley – to WB Yeats in the early 20th century, this set of ten volumes presents the work of some of the most important and best-loved poets in the English language. Each book comprises a representative collection of poems, with a short introduction, and the set includes an eleventh volume, a journal. The other poets are Emily Dickinson, Edward Lear, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Walt Whitman and Oscar Wilde.
Taking the Arrow Out of the Heart
Written mainly in 2015–16, which Alice Walker describes as ‘a time of great sadness and feelings of loss and despair’, this volume comprises around 70 poems addressed to people around the world who have used their voice on behalf of the more vulnerable, starting with ‘The Long Road Home’, a poem for Muhammad Ali.
Milton's Latin Poems
Keeping true to the style of the originals, the poet and translator David Slavitt renders John Milton’s Latin poems in deft and imaginative modern English. Introduced by Gordon Teskey, this collection is in three parts with titles referring to the metre of the poems: the elegies and epigrams and ‘The Book of the Woods’, containing various metres. Slightly off-mint.
The Latin Eclogues
Giovanni Boccaccio (1313–1375) is famous as the author of The Decameron, but his Latin Eclogues are relatively unknown. Engaging and charming in themselves, these bucolic poems also address political issues of their day and offer insights into life in Renaissance Italy. They are translated here, with an introduction, by the poet and critic David Slavitt.
Early Rymes of Robyn Hood
An Edition of the Texts, ca.1425 to ca.1600
This full critical edition of Robin Hood tales aims to, at least partially, recreate the reading conditions of their original audience by retaining the texts’ original spelling, punctuation and layout. The book includes transcriptions of three 15th-century manuscripts, various editions of Richard Pynson’s A Lytell Geste of Robyn Hode (c.1495) and William Copland’s printing of A mery geste of Robyn Hoode (1560?).
Or Procession of Orpheus
First published in 1909, Apollinaire’s first book of poetry is here translated by XJ Kennedy, whose introductory essay, ‘A Natural History of the Poet’, describes this partly autobiographical work as containing ‘the genetic code’ of the later poetry. Recalling a medieval bestiary, the 30 short poems, in both French and English translation, are accompanied by 30 woodcuts by Raoul Dufy. American cut pages.
The World's Most Treasured Love Poems
Selected by the late poet and scholar Suheil Bushrui, the 200 poems in this anthology include Arabic masterpieces by Rumi and Omar Khayyam, and Western classics from Sappho and Homer to Shakespeare and Donne. Ancient Chinese verses also feature, and examples from the indigenous peoples of Africa, Australasia and the Americas. Grouped by theme, they explore the many facets of love – desire and longing, joy and sorrow, and sensual and spiritual love.
Tell Me the Truth About Life
A National Poetry Day Anthology
‘Truth’ was the theme of the 25th National Poetry Day in 2019, and for this celebratory anthology a great range of people – writers, footballers, teachers and even an astronaut – were asked to nominate poems that spoke truth to them. The result was this volume of 100 ‘poems that matter’, whether dreaming of pleasure-domes with Coleridge in ‘Kubla Khan’ (1816) or facing the real and ‘half terrible’ world in Maggie Smith’s ‘Good Bones’ (2015).
A Laureate's Choice of Poems of War and Peace
The 100 poems in this collection include work written in response to the Armistice of 1918, poems from earlier centuries and other conflicts, and specially commissioned works from modern writers including Simon Armitage, Alice Oswald and Jackie Kay.
With a Thousand Kisses
A Collection of Erotic Poetry and Art
From Heinrich Heine’s humorous ‘The Morning After’ to Louis de Berniere’s more intense ‘A Love Foretold’, this diverse anthology covers a wide range of sensual poetic expression. Predominantly by Western writers including John Donne, DH Lawrence and Carol Ann Duffy, the 45 works are complemented by erotic illustrations by artists including Rodin, Klimt and Schiele. Sexually explicit.
Sound the Deep Waters
Women's Romantic Poetry in the Victorian Age
This collection of verses by poets including Christina Rossetti, Emily Dickinson, George Eliot and Emily Brontë shows how the breadth of their interests defies the stereotype of the Victorian woman. The poems are paired with paintings by the Pre-Raphaelites, among them female artists such as Evelyn de Morgan and Kate Bunce, while the introduction explores the poets’ responses to love, the realities of life, and growing old.
Some Corner of a Foreign Field
Poetry and Art of the First World War
This anthology brings together poems by 21 authors, including Wilfred Owen, DH Lawrence and Katharine Tynan, to illustrate how contemporary responses to the First World War changed from an initial excitement at the opportunity to display courage and chivalry, through years of bitterness and rage, to calls for compassion and reconciliation. The poems are juxtaposed with paintings, mostly from the Imperial War Museum’s collection, which depict wartime scenes on and off the battlefield.
Among the 200 poems in this collection are many of the most memorable in English, such as John Masefield’s Sea-Fever, TS Eliot’s Journey of the Magi and Edward Lear’s The Owl and the Pussy-cat; but there are also many less well-known works to discover. The poems are arranged by theme, including Childhood and Youth, Poems to Read Aloud and Magic and Mystery, the pages of each section decorated by Isabelle Brent in different colours.
Ælfric's Lives of the Virgin Spouses
With Modern English Parallel-Text Translations
Written to bolster the faith of English Christians at the time of the Viking raids, Ælfric’s Lives of the Virgin Spouses tells the stories of Julian and Basilissa, Cecilia and Valerian and Chrysanthus and Daria, couples who married, but true to the ideal of marital celibacy, never consummated their union. Alongside the Old English originals, Upchurch provides modern English parallel-text translations and the closest Latin source texts (also with translations) for comparison. With introduction, notes, commentary and glossary.
Before his early death, Robert Fergusson (1750–74) created a substantial body of verse, and Burns acknowledged the influence of its humour, vigour and craft. This edition contains all his Scots poems and a selection of those in English, along with an introduction and notes.
Chosen by the poet himself and described by Michael Hofmann as ‘a gift to old and new readers alike’, this selection comprises five poems from each of twelve published collections, from his first, New Weather, released in 1973 when Muldoon was a student at Queens University, Belfast, to One Thousand Things Worth Knowing (2015), which includes ‘Cuthbert and the Otters’, in memory of his mentor, Seamus Heaney.
In this collaboration between poet and painter, Derek Walcott, born and living in St Lucia, responds to each of 50 paintings by Peter Doig, the Scottish-born figurative artist now resident in Trinidad. Together, their works enter a dialogue on the Caribbean’s colonial legacy, home and the boundaries of art.
1914: Poetry Remembers
To commemorate the First World War, Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy asked modern poets to select a war poem and respond in verse. The resulting anthology contains familiar works by the great war poets as well as that of writers such as Akhmatova, Apollinaire and Trakl. Modern contributors include Seamus Heaney, Andrew Motion and Duffy herself.
On the Nature of Poetry
An Appraisal and Investigation of the Art which for 4000 Years has Distilled the Spoken Thoughts of Mankind
To understand the nature of poetry and the power it exerts over heart and mind, Verity surveys the work of poets and the impact of their work, discussing and quoting lines by over 200 poets, from the anonymous author of Epic of Gilgamesh in around 2000 BCE to TS Eliot in the 20th century. Off-mint.
The Great Poets: Gerard Manley Hopkins
In the Great Poets series, actors read substantial selections from the work of Britain and America’s most celebrated poets, including less familiar pieces as well as their most famous poems. Each audio book is a single CD with around 70 minutes running time. Jeremy Northam reads 38 poems by Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844–1889), including ‘Pied Beauty’, ‘God’s Grandeur’, ’The Windhover’ and an excerpt from ‘The Wreck of the Deutschland’.
John Betjeman Collected Poems
The best-loved British poet of the late 20th century, John Betjeman (1906–1984) was, in the words of Andrew Motion, 'a television celebrity before the term was invented'. This expanded edition of the Collected Works includes Betjeman's verse autobiography, Summoned by Bells, and a new Introduction by Andrew Motion.
The Iliad and the Odyssey
Introducing this edition of Homer’s two epic poems, Michael Dirda writes that ‘few other works ... have so deeply entered our cultural bloodstream’. Here, in their entirely, are Samuel Butler’s prose translations of the exploits of Achilles, Agamemnon and Odysseus and their mortal and immortal adversaries.
The Divine Comedy
Inferno Purgatorio Paradiso
All three books of Dante’s Divine Comedy, narrating the poet’s journey through the circles of ‘Inferno’ and climbing the mountain of ‘Purgatorio’ to the earthly ‘Paradiso’, are presented here in the classic 1867 verse translation by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, with illustrations by Gustave Doré.
The Collected Poems of Samuel Beckett
A Critical Edition
It was as a poet that Samuel Beckett launched himself in the little reviews of 1930s Paris, and as a poet that he ended his career. This volume is the most complete edition to date of his poetry and verse translations, and the first critical edition. The contents establish a definitive text and canon for the poetry, including previously unpublished material, with extensive commentary and notes placing each poem in context and identifying resonances across Beckett's work as a whole.
Nefertiti in the Flak Tower
Collected Verse 2008–2011
Clive James describes these poems as combining ‘American cultural information with a British range of tones’, and they deal with intriguing subjects, including the fate of Nefertiti’s statue in Nazi Germany, Whitman’s final moments and the Iliad, Hollywood-style. Off-mint.
The Commonplace Book of Sir John Strangways
A Royalist MP, Sir John Strangways (1585–1666) was imprisoned in the Tower on charges of high treason between 1645 and 1648 and during that time began compiling his commonplace book of reflections and poems. This full critical edition is Volume 275 of the Medieval and Renaissance Texts and Studies series. No jacket.
Stories and Poems
Jerome K Jerome’s account of Montmorency’s appalling behaviour; the coming of the Pekinese to England; a heartfelt epitaph to a Newfoundland dog by Lord Byron: Mark Bryant’s anthology is an engrossing collection of poetry and prose, arranged by themes including clever dogs, the hounds of hell, and in memoriam.
A Personal Anthology of Scottish Poems
Alexander McCall Smith’s anthology of Scottish poems is arranged in eight parts, on themes including love and marriage, islands, and war, conflict and loss, with poets spanning the centuries, from William Dunbar in the 15th, to Hugh MacDiarmid and Kathleen Raine in the 20th.
Best known as a novelist, John Updike was also an accomplished poet. The 129 observations on life, love, art and science collected here are arranged chronologically to form a verse diary spanning his entire career and include such favourites as ‘Seagulls’ and 'Dog’s Death’. Felt-tip mark on lower trimmed edge.
The Poems of the Pearl Manuscript
in Modern English Prose Translation
Based on the authors’ 2007 edition of the Pearl manuscript, this volume provides close, accurate translations of the ‘superb, but linguistically difficult’ medieval English poems Pearl, Cleanness Patience and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. No jacket.
An Anthology of Stories and Poems
‘Cat: a pygmy lion who loves mice, hates dogs and patronizes human beings’, wrote Oliver Herford (1863–1935); but far from taking offence, we have sung the praises of cats in poetry and prose since the Ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead asked, ‘Who is this Cat?’ This anthology is arranged by theme, from the ‘Fireside Phoenix’ to ‘Requiescat’, and includes writers and poets from Aesop to Jerome K Jerome – and many famous literary cats.
Poets on Composers from Thomas Tallis to Arvo Pärt
This anthology brings together poetic responses to 80 great composers, from the Renaissance to the 21st century. The texts include John Dryden’s ode on the death of Purcell, Elizabeth Jennings’ poem on Mozart’s Horn Concertos and Michael Longley on Mahler’s Kindertotenlieder.
The Great Poets: Walt Whitman
In the Great Poets series, actors read substantial selections from the work of Britain and America’s most celebrated poets, including less familiar pieces as well as their most famous poems. Each audio book is a single CD with around 70 minutes running time. Walt Whitman’s ‘Leaves of Grass’ was considered disreputable when it was published in 1855; now he is seen as ‘America’s poet’. This selection of ten poems includes ‘I Sing the Body Electric’, and Whitman’s rallying cry to the North in the Civil War, ‘Beat! Beat! Drums!’.
Beneath Troubled Skies
Poems of Scotland at War, 1914–1918
Some of the finest First World War verses were written by Scottish poets. This collection of work by Charles Hamilton Sorley, EA Mackintosh, Margaret Sackville and others powerfully evokes the terror of the trenches and the anguish of bereavement.
The Poetry of a People
Over many centuries, from Caedmon to Carol Ann Duffy, Britons have recorded their joys and sorrows, their loves and losses, in verse. In this anthology, which accompanied Radio 4's celebration of National Poetry Day in 2015, Andrew Marr tells the story of the country through the words of its poets. Alongside the work of such acclaimed writers as Chaucer, Shakespeare and Wordsworth are many lesser-known gems, offering us a glimpse of people's lives and experiences in every era.
Reading Chaucer's Poems
A Guided Selection By
Chaucer is justly regarded as the father of English poetry for his wit, vivid characterization and narrative verve. This selection includes The Parliament of Fowls, Troilus and Criseyde, The Legend of Good Women and generous extracts from The Canterbury Tales. A general introduction outlines what is known of his life and work, while each poem is preceded by an illuminating commentary and accompanied by a glossary explaining unfamiliar words.
Ovid: Metamorphoses X (Latin Texts)
The tenth book of Ovid’s vast compendium of myth focuses on Orpheus and Eurydice, Venus and Adonis, Myrrha’s incestuous passion for her father and Pygmalion’s love for the statue he created. Ideal for first-time readers of Ovid, this edition contains the Latin text, line-by-line commentary on linguistic and literary matters and a concise introduction addressing the poet’s context and the themes of Book X.
Elegies on Parish Churches
‘To the agnostic as well as the devout,’ writes Kevin Gardner, ‘the need to remember what is almost forgotten has remained a powerful poetic urge.’ His anthology comprises more than 90 poems on English churches, written by post-war poets including Sir John Betjeman, Philip Larkin, Fleur Adcock and Simon Armitage, and sharing an elegiac mood inspired by the architecture of church buildings, their place in a changing landscape and their significance as sites of collective memory.
Poetry of the First World War
Edited and with a substantial introduction by Marcus Clapham, this anthology is arranged alphabetically by poet and includes both obscure soldier-poets and the great writers of the war years such as Edward Thomas, Siegfried Sassoon, Isaac Rosenberg and Wilfred Owen. A final section provides brief biographical notes on the poets.
The Journals of Susanna Moodie
Born in Suffolk in 1803, Susanna Moodie was already a successful creative writer when her family emigrated to Canada in 1832 and adjusting to life in the backwoods was hard. Susanna’s book Roughing It in the Bush (1852) was Margaret Atwood’s inspiration for this illustrated book, a collaboration between poet and artist. The book was originally published in a limited edition in 1980; this facsimile edition includes a memoir by the artist, Charles Pachter. Slipcased. Off-mint.
We Are the Dead
Poems and Paintings from the Great War, 1914–1918
'My friend, you would not tell with such high zest/ To children ardent for some desperate glory,/ The old lie; Dulce et Decorum est/ Pro patria mori.' The response of Wilfred Owen to the war around him is just one of the many poems by British, Irish, Australian, Canadian, French and German writers in this evocative anthology. The poems' themes are echoed in paintings by artists including Paul Nash, John Singer Sargent, Otto Dix and Max Beckmann. With an introduction and biographical notes on the poets and artists.
Ride a Cock Horse
And Other Nursery Rhymes
Although best remembered today as the author of the Gormenghast trilogy, Mervyn Peake (1911–1968) was also a brilliant and prolific illustrator. This collection of nursery rhymes, first published in 1940, brings his dark magic to such perennial favourites as 'Rub-a-Dub-Dub', 'Sing a Song of Sixpence' and 'Little Jack Horner'.
Selected Poems and Letters
A major poet of the First World War, Isaac Rosenberg died at the front, near Arras, in 1918. Writing in the trenches, he was able to transmute into poetry what he described as 'the strange and extraordinary conditions of this new life'. Jean Liddiard, Rosenberg's biographer, presents a selection of his poems and letters along with a substantial introduction to his life and work.
Ode to Childhood
Poetry to Celebrate the Child
From ‘A Medieval Schoolboy’s Complaint’ to Gillian Clarke’s ‘Catrin’, this collection of poems celebrates children, childhood and being a parent. The poems are arranged by ages, from infancy to schooldays – not forgetting childhood ailments in Robert Louis Stevenson's ‘Land of Counterpane’.
The Private Prayers
Lancelot Andrewes (1555-1626) was best known for his work on the translation of the Authorized Version of the Bible. It was only after his death that his 'Private Prayers', written in Greek and Latin, began to be circulated. The powerful quality of his sermons and prayers has influenced the work of many others, most notably TS Eliot. Here, David Scott introduces and translates a new selection from the Preces Privatae. From The Golden Age of Spiritual Writing series.
Wordsworth and the Poetry of Human Suffering
Murderers, crazed widows, beggars and betrayed women - these are the pitiful figures who appear throughout Wordsworth's early narrative poetry. Analysing Wordsworth's use of pathos, from the two volumes of Lyrical Ballads to the completion of The Prelude, Averill explores questions of sentimental morality, the literary uses of human misery and the pleasures of tragedy, and argues that the poetry of human life is for Wordsworth inevitably the poetry of anguish and loss. Scruffy jackets.
White Leaping Flame
Collected Poems in Gaelic with English Translations
Sorley MacLean (Somhairle MacGill-Eain, 1911–1996) is widely recognized as the most significant writer in Scots Gaelic of the 20th century, who brought this ancient poetic tradition into the modern world. This definitive edition includes everything MacLean published in his lifetime, restoring suppressed passages from his love sequence Dain do Eimhir and his political epic about the Highland clearances An Cuilithionn. The Gaelic originals are presented opposite their English translations, many by the poet himself.
The Poems of Jesus Christ
'Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow.' Jesus Christ is the great invisible poet of the world. Embedded in the Gospels are sayings and parables of lyric intensity: austere, vivid and poignant, and rich in garden, nature and animal imagery. Barnstone's translations, excerpted from his Restored New Testament (2009), strip away the trappings of prose to reveal the consummate poetic drama of the Gospel of Jesus in all its wonder and majesty. American-cut pages.
I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud...
And Other Poems You Half-Remember from School
Our language is full of well-worn phrases from much-loved poems, but how often can we recall the rest of the poem, or the first line, or even the poet's name? This anthology presents the complete poems that gave us such immortal lines as 'Water, water everywhere/Nor any drop to drink', 'not waving but drowning' and 'They also serve who only stand and waite'. The poems are arranged chronologically, from Chaucer to Carol Ann Duffy, and indexed by title and the famous bits.
Edited, with an introduction, by the poet Michael Longley, this selection of war poetry by Robert Graves (1895–1985) includes the poems written at the Front and some, such as 'A Letter from Wales', written in retrospect during the 1920s. The book is part of Faber's Poets of the Great War series.