My boredom chock-a-blockwith furniture – the deskin bits, the sofa cushionscluttering the bed, drawersshoved beneath the dresser– I stare at Wimbledonwhile listening to the manrestretch then cleanthe carpets in two rooms.Suds rumbling in their drum,the smell of pine detergentcreeping up to me.
Two hours of plucky Brits,mauve clouds, the covers on,or grim-faced teenagerswashed up before their spotshave cleared, then I descendlike Norma Desmond,out of touch, magnanimous;and all the little dentswhere chairs and tables stoodhave disappeared, as thoughthe years of being herehad never happened.
by Stephen Knight
From 1-7 July, this week's Weekly Poem publisher, CB
editions, will be running a pop-up poetry shop at 201 Portobello Road in
London. The Shop will be filled with books (from CBe, Eyewear, Arc,
Five Leaves, Flipped Eye, and more), photographs by Ken Garland, and
other things, and an excellent selection of writers will be calling in
to do brief pop-up readings through the week. You can find out more from
Charles Boyle's Sonofabook blog here.
'A British Summer' is copyright © Stephen Knight, 2012. It is reprinted from The Prince of Wails by permission of CB editions.
Notes from CB editions:
The Prince of Wails is Stephen Knight's first collection of poems since Dream City Cinema (1996), which – like its predecessor, Flowering Limbs (1993) – was shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize and was selected by Robert Potts in the Guardian
as a Book of the Decade: 'A masterpiece in miniature, packed with
surprisingly enthusiastic and musical treatments of entropy, whether
universal or personal, by a top craftsman with a quirky and
disconcertingly loveable voice.' Stephen Knight's novel Mr Schnitzel
(2000) won the Arts Council of Wales Book of the Year Award. Born in
Swansea, Stephen Knight now lives in London. Read more selections from
the collection on the CB editions website.
CB editions publishes no more than six books a year,
mainly poetry and short fiction and including work in translation.
Since 2008 its poetry titles have twice won the Aldeburgh First
Collection Prize and have twice been shortlisted for both the Forward
Prize and the Forward First Collection Prize. In 2011 CBe put on Free Verse,
a one-day book fair for poetry publishers to show their work and sell
direct to the public; the event was repeated in September 2012 with over
50 publishers taking part. Find out more about the publisher from the website, where you can also sign up to the CB editions mailing list, or 'like' the publisher on Facebook to keep up-to-date with its activities.
Copyright information: please note that the copyrights of all the
poems displayed on the website and sent out on the mailing list are held
by the respective authors, translators or estates, and no work should
be reproduced without first gaining permission from the individual