Being Human is out...
... and I am in it!
I have bought and loved Bloodaxe poetry books for years. They are beautifully prepared and presented, innovative, diverse and internationally renowned. I absolutely adore my collection, which I keep going back to. Time after time.
So when I was asked earlier this year -totally out of the blue- if I agreed to have my poem "Mother Tongue" published in Being Human I thought I HAD to be dreaming. When I eventually realised that I was actually awake, I think I replied with a "YES, pppplease..."
And so here I am: in the same anthology as Yehuda Amichai, Paul Celan, Pablo Neruda, Sharon Olds, Sylvia Plath... to mention a few of my idols. I think I could still be dreaming. Please don't wake me up.
But do buy the book, and read poems about living in the modern world, poems that will touch your heart, stir your mind. Poems about being human, about love and loss, fear and longing, hurt and wonder.
THANK YOU, NEIL ASTLEY!
"Being Human" is the third book in the "Staying Alive" poetry trilogy. "Staying Alive" and its sequel "Being Alive" have introduced many thousands of new readers to contemporary poetry. "Being Human" is a companion volume to those two books - a world poetry anthology offering poetry lovers an international selection of 'real poems for unreal times'.
'Being Human, the final volume in Bloodaxe's acclaimed trilogy of anthologies, edited by Neil Astley...the first, Staying Alive (2002), ably demonstrated the power of a well-constructed anthology to introduce readers to vital new poets. I'll be expecting a copy of this one under my tree next Christmas morning' – Sarah Crown, Guardian.
A performance of my work "Tempus Fugit" in October 2016. Photos by Ore.
I will soon be having a new poem translated into Dutch. The theme? Europe and refugees. All will be revealed in May.
Thank you, English School, for this tremendous honour.