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The City

Stav Poleg

Cover of The City by Stav Poleg
10% off all versions
Categories: 21st Century, British, First Collections, Women
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Available as:
Paperback (128 pages)
(Pub. Mar 2022)
9781800172371
£11.99 £10.79
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(Pub. Mar 2022)
9781800172388
£9.59 £8.63
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  • Description
  • Author
  • Awards
  • Reviews
  • Shortlisted for the Seamus Heaney First Collection Poetry Prize 2023

    Stav Poleg's poems are about cities, what they contain and what they lack; and all cities are habitable and analogous, The City: London, New York, London, New York, Rome. 'Think 'La Città / e la Casa', pages revealing city by city as if every city / is cut into rivers and sliced into streets down to the seeds of each scene.' This, her much anticipated debut collection, includes work from her 2017 pamphlet Lights, Camera, and from Carcanet's New Poetries VIII, as well as poems that have featured in The New Yorker, Poetry London, Poetry Ireland Review and PN Review.

    Her poems are fascinated by the freedom of motion and its constraints: how by means of technique they defy the gravity that draws them down the page to a conclusion. They subvert what they see and, as language, they also subvert how they see: we are always seeing but with all our senses, including our ears and our semantic facilities, our echo detector, how the poems relate to one another and how they relate to the worlds of art and invention in different modes and ages.

    Poleg regularly collaborates with fellow artists and poets – her graphic-novel installation, Dear Penelope: Variations on an August Morning, created with artist Laura Gressani, was acquired by the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in 2014.
    Stav Poleg 's poetry has appeared on both sides of the Atlantic, in The New Yorker, Kenyon Review, Poetry London, Poetry Ireland Review, PN Review and elsewhere. A selection of her work is featured in New Poetries VIII (Carcanet, 2021). Her graphic-novel installation, “Dear Penelope: Variations on an August Morning,” created ... read more
    Awards won by Stav Poleg Short-listed, 2023 The Seamus Heaney First Collection Poetry Prize
    (The City)
      'The City by Stav Poleg is an ambitious collection full of atmosphere, cosmopolitan sophistication and formal challenge. These cinematic poems are restless and questing - and not a little romantic - in their exploration of cities and art itself. This is a dense, self-infolded, endlessly ramifying collection of poems that display an acute sensibility for the "city's aesthetics", the city "expanding / from one page to another."

    2023 Seamus Heaney Poetry Prize Judges' Comments


    'The City is a work of surreal and fantastical reach...we acclimatise to the strangeness of the setting, and enjoy the imagination at work.'

    Sylvia Secci, Poetry London

    '...Like the best cities, it's exhilarating: candid, paced, ever-changing and utterly captivating' 

    Maria Crawford, Financial Times 

    'The poems often feel like a high-wire act, careening through intricate scenery in a tone by turns playful and lonely. Poleg delights in language as creative material'

    Heather Green, Poetry Foundation

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