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Michael Heller’s Collected Poems 1965-2010

Michael Heller’s Collected Poems 1965-2010

Collected Poems: Michael Heller Nighboat Books; Distributed by UPNE (

From his early spare poems written in Spain to the recent ruminative work exploring language, tradition (often Jewish and diasporic) and the self, this book collects four decades of Michael Heller’s “tone perfect poems” as George Oppen described them. Enriched with the detailed landscapes of the phenomenal world and mind, This Constellation Is A Name confirms Michael Heller’s place at the forefront of contemporary American poetry.

An article on Michael Heller’s work including his seminal book on the Objectivists, Conviction’s Net of Branches, his essays in Uncertain Poetries and his edition of Carl Rakosi, Man and Poet will appear in Tears in the Fence 56.

Poetry Parnassus at Southbank Centre

Simon Armitage

We’ve been hearing rumblings of this for the last year and a half and now it looks like it’s finally coming to land. Spearheaded by the poet Simon Armitage this promises to the biggest poetry event in the world. Ever. Certainly, it feels like the most ambitious. Can anyone say, United Colours of Poetry?

All very exciting!

Alleged Blasphemy Case: Poet Turns to Arrest for Unpaid Printing Bill

Poetry and the phrase “all human life is here” are natural bedfellows but this case, where a mentor poet resorts to extreme measures in order to get paid, is particularly bizarre. Read more in the International Herald Tribune.

From The Spectator Series – Discovering Poetry: Milton’s Blindness

The Spectator analyses John Milton’s poetry about his rapidly failing sight.

Sonnet XIX

When I consider how my light is spent,
Ere half my days, in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodged with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
My true account, lest He returning chide,
“Doth God exact day-labour, light denied?”
I fondly ask; But patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies “God doth not need
Either man’s work or his own gifts. Who best
Bear His mild yoke, they serve Him best. His state
Is kingly: thousands at His bidding speed
And post o’er land and ocean without rest;
They also serve who only stand and wait.”

Some Thoughts About Poetry and Comics From The Rialto

I hold my hands up, I’m something of a comics/graphic novels geek. I also love poetry so to see those two things being aligned to great effect by Chrissy Williams in The Rialto warms the cockles of my heart. Never mind the fact that we are both girls and not supposed to be swayed by such geekery!

Actually, isn’t being a poet a bit geeky anyway?

Vampire Magnetic Poetry

Poetry doesn’t have to be all brow wrinkling and angst. And here at Tears in the Fence towers, we are partial to those magnetic poetry kits you can stick on the fridge. So every time we reach for the milk to make a cuppa, we get to compose a tiny fragment of poetry too by shifting around the magnets. It’s an accumulative sort of thing and great fun. We’re also partial to a bit of the gothic round these parts (and who isn’t?) so when we heard about vampire magnet poetry, it gave us an almighty tickle!

Get yours here!

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