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Festive Verse: Perfect Poetry Presents this Christmas

Posted on 13th November 2019 by Mark Skinner

From cutting edge verse to comforting collections of classics, we present a bumper crop of poetic inspiration to enliven and enrich the festive season.

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Another festive poetic marvel from the former poet laureate, Frost Fair hymns the revels and merrymaking of seventeenth century London, when the Thames froze over during the Little Ice Age. Lyrical, evocative and swathed in a bewitchingly wintry atmosphere, Frost Fair is a stunning literary miniature.

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A beautifully detailed reproduction of a Christmas present that Joni Mitchell created for her close friends, Morning Glory on the Vine is a tantalisingly intimate snapshot of the great singer-songwriter circa 1971. Bursting with some of her earliest lyrics and illustrations from her sketch books, this is an eminently collectable volume to treasure forever.
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Wonderfully democratic and inclusive, this anthology reflects the favourite poems of the nation, as chosen by everyone from world-famous astronauts to primary school teachers. Published to coincide with National Poetry Day, this collection explores the theme of truth through a diverse and always unpredictable range of verse.

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A sublime exploration of the genesis of the Romantic movement, Nicholson’s book focuses on the period between June 1797 and Autumn 1798; a time when Coleridge and Wordsworth penned some of the most lauded verse in English poetry. The Making of Poetry is an illuminating – and stunningly illustrated - account of poetry’s Annus Mirabilis.
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The tumult and rancour of the twentieth century told through the seminal poets of the age and their transcendent, zeitgeist-defining verse. From the doomed majesty of the First World War poets to lyrical musings on the fall of Communism, The Music of Time demonstrates poetry’s uncanny ability to make sense of earth-shattering world events.
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The latest recipient of the mantle of Poet Laureate, Armitage has been a major figure in British poetry since the publication of his debut collection Zoom! in 1989. This stellar anthology gathers all Armitage’s best known verse, as well as a few surprises and extracts from his medieval verse translations. An essential volume from a national treasure.
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The Armistice of 1918 brought ceasefire to the war on the Western Front, but 'the Great War' would not as hoped be 'the war to end all wars'.
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Arranged thematically by feelings and emotions, the poetry within Set Me on Fire rejoices both in human connection and personal introspection. Forcing the reader to examine feelings in the round, Risbridger’s carefully curated selection throws up unexpected juxtapositions and inter-relationships that make this volume a constant, unpredictable joy.
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Featuring classical poets like Bronte and Keats as well as more modern voices such as Stevie Smith and Norman MacCaig, this stunningly designed anthology is an uplifting tribute to the power of friendship. With a poem for every day of the year, Friends is a constant source of companionship and warmth.
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The founder of National Poetry Day is back, dispensing poetic prescriptions with aplomb in this inspiring new collection of verse. With over fifty ‘conditions’ addressed and numerous suggestions from the public at large, The Poetry Pharmacy Returns is soothing balm for a turbulent age.

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The inimitable Gyles Brandreth revels in wordplay, rhythm and lyrical eloquence with this deftly curated anthology of poetry that runs the gamut from W.H. Auden to Rupi Kaur. A celebration of language and craft and a testament to the enduring power of the verse form, Dancing By the Light of the Moon is a truly inspired collection.

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The unique lyricism of hundreds of the world’s languages is rapidly dying out and, in this transcendent collection, Chris McCabe gathers together fifty masterly poems in tongues that may soon be silenced. From Assyrian to Yiddish, Poems from the Edge of Extinction resounds with both joyous celebration and urgent warning.
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Medusa, Circe, Athena; legendary female figures from the annals of Greek myth have a surprising amount to teach us about life in the twenty-first century. In poetry, prose and picture, the multi-talented Nikita Gill takes us on a whirlwind tour of classical Greece, elucidating the stories of the women who dominated their age.

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The title may be brutally honest but the poetry within has been hand-picked to soothe your soul, put problems in perspective and raise those plummeting spirits. A worthy companion to Poems for a World Gone to Sh*t, this is an invaluable collection for today’s troubled times.
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An astounding, incendiary collection that takes the New Cross Fire of 1981 as a jumping off point for an exploration of injustice, prejudice and the turbulence of black lives in the decades since. An urgent new voice in British poetry, Bernard invokes Jamaican patois and the rhythms of the dancehall to craft a richly evocative verse-world.
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A breath-taking tour de force that draws unflinching and uncomfortable parallels between the bestial activities of Ancient gods and the toxic immorality of modern society, Vertigo and Ghost builds on the dissonant connections of Bright Travellers to create a poetry of searing honesty and uncompromising ethical heft.
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