Welch, John

John Welch - Visiting Exile



Available only direct from Shearsman Books.

John Welch - Visiting Exile

Paperback, 80pp, 8.5x5.5ins

Download a PDF sampler from this book here.

In this new collection John Welch returns to his longstanding preoccupation with the inner city and its diversities, fuelled in part by his own past experience as a teacher working in multicultural education. 'Out Walking' (which was the title of his first collection back in the 1980s) the poet's trajectory across the city is informed by London's imperialist past, by the 7/7 bombings, and by a sense of the complexities and ambiguities inherent in a deeply felt involvement with the Other.


A recurring presence in the poetry is 'All Dressed Up and Nowhere to Go', a sculpture by the London-based Lebanese artist Souheil Sleiman comprising hundreds of fragments of broken mirror woven together to represent a group of tower blocks, taken here to represent, among other things, the self-regard and inherent fragility of 'the City' in its recent incarnation.

"This book is full of integrity — again and again, the seriousness of address; writing as if poetry were a matter of life and death. Quiet lyrics following one another like cold waves onto an autumn shore. No flash effects, no random scramblings, no posturing, nothing sly or trivial. Writing as if your life depended on it." —Peter Hughes reviewing the Collected Poems at Intercapillary Space

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