New publication: “Selected Poems: 1976-2022”

I am delighted to be able to announce the forthcoming publication of “Selected Poems: 1976-2022”.

At a recent reading event, I was asked which of my collections was my ‘best book’. It was an innocent enough question, designed to aid a purchasing decision. It was also an unfair one. Any marginal preference I may have for one or the other is inevitably dwarfed by the knowledge that there are good pieces in all my volumes of poetry and that, in expressing a preference, a potential reader will always be in danger of missing out on something I would like to think ‘worthy’. Yet you can’t expect your average reader to buy all your books!

For a while I had been toying with the idea of pulling together a ‘selected works’, gathering all my favourite poems under a single cover. This notion had been growing in strength partly as a result of more regular attendance of ‘open mics’ at which I sometimes struggled to decide what to read; wouldn’t it be rewarding to be able to take a single book to such events knowing every piece inside was a live candidate? On the back of that ambition, the ‘best book’ question only added fuel to the fire.

So here it is, a ‘Greatest Hits’ from my seven collections published to-date. And, because I couldn’t help myself, I have thrown in a small number of as yet unseen poems. Of course, I should also say that this endeavour in no way diminishes the value of the individual books themselves; there are many more poems that might easily have found their way into this volume had size not been a consideration.

“Selected Poems: 1976-2022” will be published by Coverstory books on 1st June 2022.