Carcanet Press Logo
Quote of the Day
Your list has always been interesting, idiosyncratic, imaginative and your translations [...] have been a source of pleasure to me.
Al Alvarez
Order by 13th December to receive books in time for Christmas (UK orders, standard shipping). Non-UK orders should be placed by 13th December (with courier shipping) to ensure delivery by Christmas. Please also bear in mind that all orders may be subject to postal delays that are beyond our control.

Collected Poems

Rowan Williams

Cover of Collected Poems by Rowan Williams
10% off eBook (EPUB) Needs ADE!
Categories: 21st Century, British, Christianity, Welsh
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Available as:
Paperback (246 pages)
(Pub. Nov 2021)
9781800171091
Out of Stock
eBook (EPUB) Needs ADE!
(Pub. Nov 2021)
9781800171923
£12.79 £11.51
Digital access available through Exact Editions
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.
  • Description
  • Author
  • Reviews
  • Collected Poems contains the previously published poetry of Rowan Williams, together with a significant body of new work. Also included are his celebrated translations from Welsh, German and Russian poetry.

    His earlier collections have included pieces prompted by the landscape and literature of West Wales, and a sequence of poems on the varieties of love in the plays of Shakespeare. This Collected adds a sequence commissioned for the fiftieth anniversary of the Aberfan disaster, tributes to writers as different as Alan Garner and John Milton, and a reflection on sculptures by Antony Gormley. The book reflects the poet's wide range of interest and the variety of poetic mediums he has explored. His poems continue to respond vividly to the visual arts, and to the experience and imagination of 'pre-modern' cultures, as well as to the crises and tragedies of our time. He continues to read with uncanny clarity the signs that are manifest in nature and history. Imagination working through language brings us as close as we can get to our condition. 'I dislike the idea of being a religious poet,' he says. 'I would prefer to be a poet for whom religious things mattered intensely.'
    Rowan Williams was born in 1950. He was the 104th Archbishop of Canterbury (2002-2012). He spent much of his earlier career as an academic at the Universities of Cambridge and Oxford successively. Williams stood down as Archbishop of Canterbury on 31 December 2012 and became Master of Magdalene College at Cambridge ... read more
    'By his own account, Williams would wish to be "a poet for whom religious things mattered intensely". This handsome, electrically charged collection confirms the truth of his aspiration...a poet attentive to language's precise and disconcerting magic.'

    Rachel Mann, Church Times

     'These are poems of great contraries: they are stark, yet there is great hope in their bleakness; they are scholarly, yet there is simplicity beyond their scholarship; they come from head and heart. Not the priest, but the poet, bids you find comfort in their uncomfortable words. We badly need the gift of these poems.'
    Iain McGilchrist
    Praise for Rowan Williams 'His poetry opens windows on a rich and restless imagination.'
    Boyd Tonkin, Independent
    'Reading this poet, at such a period in our history, is like feeling the first drops of rain after a long season of drought.'
    A.N. Wilson, Daily Telegraph
     'It's serious, craftsmanly writing on faith, history and mortality - it's the real thing.'
    Sean O'Brien, Independent
    'The handful of truly successful poems here marry [Williams'] terse precision with an unwavering search for the truth, whatever it is, however elusive it might be' - 'While the dark melts''
    Times Literary Supplement 18.12.2015
Share this...
The Carcanet Blog Rowan Williams: Collected Poems read more John F. Deane: Naming of the Bones read more Vahni Capildeo: Places of Writing read more Jenny Lewis Responds to a Commission for a Poem Against Climate Change for COP26 read more Carcanet Books in the Exact Editions COP26 Virtual Showcase read more John McAuliffe on Owen Lowery's The Crash Wake Poems read more
Find your local bookshop logo
Arts Council Logo
We thank the Arts Council England for their support and assistance in this interactive Project.
This website ©2000-2021 Carcanet Press Ltd