Quote of the Day
I'm filled with admiration for what you've achieved, and particularly for the hard work and the 'cottage industry' aspect of it.
Subscribe to our mailing list
What Must Happen
10% off Paperback
Categories: 21st Century, British
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Paperback (88 pages)
(Pub. Aug 2016)
eBook (EPUB) Needs ADE!
(Pub. Aug 2016)
(Pub. Aug 2016)
To use the EPUB version, you will need to have Adobe Digital Editions (ADE) installed on your device. You can find out more at https://www.adobe.com/uk/solutions/ebook/digital-editions.html. Please do not purchase this version if you do not have and are not prepared to install, Adobe Digital Editions.
Shortlisted for the 2017 Arnold Bennett Book Prize
What Must Happen is Jeffrey Wainwright’s most intimate and elegiac collection of poems to date, recalling lost parents, relations and friends. Shared childhood memories, and the history of hometown Stoke-on-Trent, connect Wainwright’s personal themes to wider historical subjects. A sequence of contemporary hymns to Roman gods depicts Jupiter, ‘elbows on the bar, nursing a beer’, while a homage to twentieth-century Italian painter Ottone Rosai asks, twenty times, ‘What is there to an empty street?’ One answer: ‘the simply sunlit, / the clearly pure, / the assent to less’. Another: ‘plums / so prolific they colour out / the leaves’. Rather than polarising the playful and the solemn, Wainwright’s poems examine their complex interactions. Though composed primarily in free verse, symmetries and refrains span the collection as a whole, imparting a tight, vibrant clarity. The poems in What Must Happen are painted with a hair-fine brush, swift and precise, unwilling to rest at an adequate fiction as long as an inadequate truth remains in reach. ‘There are these things and sometimes the shadow of these things / but they will not be seen apart.’
Awards won by Jeffrey Wainwright Short-listed, 2017 Arnold Bennett Book Prize (What Must Happen )
'What Must Happen is at once a lyrical meditation on the nature of history and on ourselves as perceiving subjects in a world of objects and other species. It ranges confidently across different geographies and societies from working lives in Josiah Wedgewood's Etruria in the Potteries to the example of the Eternals: Jupiter, Venus, and Apollo. Combining sinuous intelligence with humanity and compassion, Jeffrey Wainwright's latest collection puts him at the forefront of contemporary English poets.'
'Jeffrey Wainwright's work is among the most interesting of any poet now writing'
The Guardian Praise for Jeffrey Wainwright
Ben Ray, Oxford Review of Books
'As Best We Can is a defining poetic moment of 2020.''There are some lovely individual poems here, like 'Spring Walk', 'Seascape' and 'The Window-Ledge'. But best are the poems of loss and change, about growing up in the Potteries after the War'
Steve Whittaker, Yorkshire Times
Andy Croft, The Morning Star
'Many of these quiet poems have a disproportionately unsettling effect... This is work that comes from slow attention, proper effort and commitment to understanding.'
Steve Hanson, Manchester Review of Books
The Carcanet Blog On the Way to Jerusalem Farm: Carola Luther read more Notes on Field Requiem: Sheri Benning read more Windows on Translation: P.C. Evans read more Virga: Togara Muzanenhamo read more Midnight in the Kant Hotel: Rod Mengham read more The Long Year of Plagues: Fred D'Aguiar read more
We thank the Arts Council England for their support and assistance in this interactive Project.
This website ©2000-2021 Carcanet Press Ltd