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The Poet's Voice and Craft

Edited by Chris McCully

Cover Picture of The Poet's Voice and Craft
Imprint: Lives and Letters
Publisher: Carcanet Press
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  • How does a poet go about writing poetry? Chris McCully, himself a poet and teacher of poetry, put this question to thirteen of Britain's most distinguished practitioners, who discuss in these informal essays the techniques of writing poetry, how they structure their writing-the choice of words, sounds (phonology), metrics (or non-metrics), and some of the processes of poetic genesis and re-writing.

    Each poet was sent a set of guidelines and their individual responses demonstrate the vitality-and difficulty-of
    `writing poetry'. Readers interested in the languages of modern poetry will find this first-hand testimony a revelation; fellow poets will find much to stimulate reflection; those concerned with poetic trajectory will find conceptual variety; and those curious about how poems come to be written and revised will find a shrewd, acknowledged witness.
    Chris McCully, born in Bradford, Yorkshire in 1958, worked as a full-time academic, specialising in the history of the English language and on English sound-structure as well as on verse and verse-form, at the University of Manchester (1985–2003). From 2003–13 he worked part-time at various universities in the Netherlands (Vrije ... read more
    Praise for Chris McCully 'His verse is crisp and propulsive... At its best, McCully's translation is clear and readable, hitting the beats of Old English metre, and offering punchy phrases'

    Caroline Batten and Charles Tolkien-Gillet, Translation and Literature

    'This is a commendable and exhilarating book, McCully admirably bringing to life the world of honour, weirdness and creatures beyond our ken.' 

    Anthony Clay, Chase  

     'McCully gets the life of words, their swing and weight, resonance and cadence. The poems spark with great lines and phrases...'
    Literary Review
     'This is a singular collection from a singular voice in English poetry, and I highly commend it.'
    Phillip Quinlan, Angle
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