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'You'll have to die to get these texts': Ocean Vuong’s next manuscript to be...

Vietnamese-American author and poet joins Margaret Atwood, David Mitchell and Karl Ove Knausgård to lock away work in Norway to be published in 94 years’ timeOcean Vuong is to become the seventh author...

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Maaza Mengiste: 'Knausgård really doesn’t need me as a reader, I can move on'

The Booker nominated author on the influence of Homer, struggling with Moby-Dick and feeling changed by Ama Ata AidooThe book I am currently readingI read a few books at once, and am working on...

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‘One spring morning my dad vanished’: the son of poet Heathcote Williams...

Just after becoming a new father, the author and dramatist abandoned his family. Charlie Gilmour, his son, tries to solve the riddle of the man he never really knewWithin minutes of my arrival at my...

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Joe Biden picks Seamus Heaney to add to his appeal

Presidential frontrunner quotes Irish wordsmith in his nomination acceptance speechJoe Biden is not the first nor is he likely to be the last politician to summon political spirits with poetry, but...

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Poem of the week: Felix Randal by Gerard Manley Hopkins

Hopkins welds priest, father and doctor in this enormous expression of empathy, commemorating the life of a Liverpudlian farrierFelix RandalFelix Randal the farrier, O is he dead then? my duty all...

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Hidden meaning in holiday reading? | Brief letters

Boris Johnson | Exams chaos | Proper jobs | Passports | Second cities The prime minister’s holiday reading – Lucretius’s On the Nature of Things – impressed me (Yurt alert: how the holiday PM dodged...

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'I feel like she's penetrating my soul': the power of Our Bodies Back

Available onlineCommissioned by Sadler’s Wells, Jonzi D’s new black-and white film powerfully weaves poetry and dance in a tribute to black women who have suffered violenceThe best theatre and dance to...

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Poem of the week: Thick orchards, all in white by Jean Ingelow

In her bicentennial year, here is one of the Victorian poet’s lesser-known works, a sensuously descriptive address to the Christian GodThick orchards, all in whiteThe time of the singing of birds is...

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The Gilded Auction Block; Sometimes I Never Suffered by Shane McCrae - review

A mixed-race poet raised by white supremacists addresses his country – and his presidentShane McCrae is a mixed-race American poet, who, at the age of three, was taken to Texas by his grandparents –...

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Yusef Salaam: 'Trump would have had me hanging from a tree in Central Park'

Wrongly jailed for gang rape – a case which inspired Trump to call for the death penalty – Salaam has poured his experiences into a novel about hope, justice and raceIf Donald Trump had got his way I...

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Everyday Heroes: key workers celebrated at Southbank, where hundreds face sack

Southbank Centre, London Artists’ heartfelt tributes to friends and relatives who battled through the Covid pandemic make a striking outdoor portrait show, even as the arts centre’s own workers face...

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WH Auden: 'my only duty as a poet is to defend the use of language' -...

4 September 1970: Auden discusses his new commonplace book, A Certain World, and the relation between politics and artWH Auden believes A Certain World is the nearest to an autobiography that he will...

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Claudia Rankine: 'By white privilege I mean the ability to stay alive'

The poet and playwright talks to Afua Hirsch about power, race and class, and her experience of being a first-generation immigrant living in the US today Claudia Rankine is a poet, playwright, essayist...

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Poem of the week: How Poems Arrive by Anne Stevenson

The elusive sources of poetic inspiration get a sceptical inspection from a seasoned veteranHow Poems ArriveFor Dana GioiaYou say them as your undertongue declares,Then let them knock about your upper...

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Top 10 goddesses in fiction | E Foley and B Coates

In ancient myth – and novels by authors from Neil Gaiman to Toni Morrison – these ambiguous figures are sometimes repressive, sometimes inspiringWhat springs to mind when you think of the word...

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Poem of the month: Sexual Antinomianism by Sasha Dugdale

• The best recent poetry – review roundupO St Euph, patron saint of euphemism for you the mysteries will be rewritten: the mystery of the stolen virgin, or try the mystery of the silent nights when the...

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The best recent poetry – review roundup

The Candelight Master by Michael Longley; Just Us by Claudia Rankine; FURY by David Morley; Tiger Girl by Pascale PetitIn “After Amergin”, Michael Longley embarks on a vigorous riff displaying the...

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Poem of the week: The Falling by Laura Scott

A haunting lyric about the fate of ‘all those girls’ echoes through a number of mythsThe Fallingall those girlstheir paper kneesfolding under themContinue reading...

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Anne Stevenson obituary

Poet and Plath biographer who explored a wide world of thought and feelingAnne Stevenson, the poet and biographer of Sylvia Plath, has died aged 87 from heart failure. From the appearance of her first...

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'Writing was just for fun then': Simon Armitage on writing Zoom!

The poet laureate reflects on capturing life as it appeared to a West Yorkshire twentysomething in the collection that launched his careerIn some versions of my teenage years I had no poetic ambitions...

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