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Categories: 21st Century, British
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Paperback (72 pages)
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Elegy turns into affirmation, ‘binding the pulse / back into the body’, in this new collection by Eric Gregory Award-winning poet Roger Garfitt.
Roger Garfitt has published sparingly but always to good effect. The Action reveals the individual character of each poem and sequence, ‘written only when the internal pressure demands and the slow pace of craft allows’. Carol Ann Duffy observed in The Guardian that ‘he clearly believes, quite rightly, in the Muse and his approach has the patience of a journeyman’s to his craft’.
Hard-won, but not austere, the poems are marked by tenderness and passion; quiet humour rather than irony runs through them. Sean O’Brien writes, ‘He is both a meticulous re-creator of, for example, the effects of light, and a sociable poet who sees place as expressive of its inhabitants… The minuteness of his attention is often rewarding… an intriguing counterpart to the more public work of Douglas Dunn and Tony Harrison.’
'If much of The Action is elegiac, it is often also gently but defiantly affirmative'
Sean O'Brien, Times Literary Supplement
'The Action is Roger Garfitt's first collection since Carcanet published his Selected Poems in 2000 and it has been worth waiting for... Like all good poems his need to be read with due care and attention. As this book demonstrates, it is an investment that pays off'
Stephen Claughton, The High Window
'Garfitt has mastered the art of connecting every sound and image in a poem with the action that propelled it into being.'
Anne Stevenson Praise for Roger Garfitt 'After several readings, over quite a long time, I find it all coming together in a very moving way - like the fragments of an archaeological dig gradually suggesting a whole pattern of inheritance and allegiance.'
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