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Striking a Match in a Storm

New and Collected Poems

Andrew McNeillie

Cover of Striking a Match in a Storm
10% off all versions
Categories: 21st Century, British, Welsh
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Available as:
Paperback (320 pages)
(Pub. Mar 2022)
9781800172333
£18.99 £17.09
eBook (EPUB) Needs ADE!
(Pub. Mar 2022)
9781800172340
£15.19 £13.67
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  • Description
  • Author
  • Reviews
  • The Welsh poet Andrew McNeillie brings together in this generous and timely volume his seven collections of poems – including his most recent, Making Ends Meet, and his Forward-Prize-shortlisted Carcanet collection Nevermore (2000). McNeillie's poems possess the same precision and ear for other voices which have made him a noted nature writer and an influential editor of the handsomely designed eco-literature magazine Archipelago, and like it, take as their focus the 'unnameable archipelago' of Britain and Ireland, at its wilder margins, with close observation of place, community, and hands-on outdoor experience. His celebrated memoir An Aran Keening (2001) is about a year's stay on one of the islands of that Archipelago. His publishing house Clutag Press produces beautiful limited editions of work by some of his favourite writers – Hill and Heaney among them.

    He is a witty writer and an ironist, but he is also a visionary in the sense that his poems sharpen vision of the environment and the crucial minutiae of the natural world we partly inhabit.
    Andrew McNeillie was born in North Wales and read English at Magdalen College, Oxford before becoming an editor and publisher. For a key period in his life, he was literature editor at Oxford University Press. He has also held a chair in English at Exeter University where he is now Emeritus ... read more
    Praise for Andrew McNeillie 'A living poetic language flows, easy and slangy…the occasional poems which punctuate the later part of the collection are vitalized and  real, among them elegies that remember mourning his father’s death, and  other deaths, which ring true, urged into being by poetry itself.'
    Gillian Clarke
    'The  finest poems here are witty and elegiac, comforting and cajoling and speak of pervading human concerns with a rare lyrical ease and quiet authority. McNeillie’s special gift is for providing the pleasure that comes from recognition: we can see ourselves in his poems. The book carries an epigram from Wordsworth, and there is a Wordsworthian sense of audience and connection in this collection.'
    Times Literary Supplement
    'There is some extraordinary virtuosity here – in one poem, he finds 33 half-rhymes for 'envy'.
    John Greening, Country Life
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The Carcanet Blog PN Review 266: Editorial read more Ian Pople: Spillway: New and Selected Poems read more Peter Sansom: Lanyard read more PN Review 265: Under the Cover with Gregory O'Brien read more PN Review 265: Editorial read more Patrick Worsnip: On Translating Saba read more
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