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J.H. Prynne is Britain's leading late Modernist poet. His austere yet playful poetry challenges our sense of the world, not by any direct address to the reader but by showing everything in a different light, enacting slips and changes of meaning through shifting language. Not since the late work of Ezra Pound and the Maximus series of Charles Olson have the possibilities of poetry been so fundamentally questioned and extended as they are in the life work of J.H. Prynne. When his Poems was first published in 1999, it was immediately acclaimed as a landmark in modern poetry, and nominated for a New Yorker book prize. Four further collections were added to the second edition of Poems in 2005. This expanded third edition of Poems (2015) includes the complete texts of his later work: Refuse Collection (2004), To Pollen (2006), STREAK WILLING ENTOURAGE ARTESIAN (2009), Sub Songs (2010), Kazoo Dreamboats; or, On What There Is (2011), and Al-Dente (2014), all previously available only in limited editions. Poems includes his 1969 collection The White Stones - central to his poetics - which was reissued in 2016 by New York Review Books with an introduction by Peter Gizzi.
Bloodaxe Books, 9781780371542, 688pp.
Publication Date: April 23, 2015
About the Author
J.H. Prynne is Britain's leading late Modernist poet. His Poems (1982) collected all the work he wanted to keep in print, beginning with Kitchen Poems (1968). An expanded and updated version was published by Bloodaxe Books with Fremantle Arts Centre Press in 1999 as Poems, with a second, expanded edition in 2005. The third edition of Poems (Bloodaxe Books, 2015) includes the complete texts of his later work: Refuse Collection (2004), To Pollen (2006), Streak Willing Entourage Artesian (2009), Sub Songs (2010), Kazoo Dreamboats; or, On What There Is (2011), and Al-Dente (2014), all previously uncollected or available in limited editions, as well as a group of previously unpublished poems. Prynne has published a wide range of critical and academic prose, including works on Saussure, Wordsworth, Shakespeare. His essay on New Songs from a Jade Terrace, an anthology of early Chinese love poetry, was included in the second edition of the book from Penguin 1982. He has written poetry in classical Chinese under the name Pu Ling-en. His 1969 collection The White Stones - central to his poetics - was reissued in 2016 by New York Review Books with an introduction by Peter Gizzi. An annotated, illustrated edition of his 1983 collection The Oval Window, edited by N.H. Reeve and Richard Kerridge, was published by Bloodaxe in 2018. Prynne is a Life Fellow of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge. In 2005 he retired from his posts teaching English Literature as a Lecturer and University Reader in English Poetry for the University of Cambridge and as Director of Studies in English for Gonville and Caius College; he retired as Librarian of the College in 2006.