A celebrated winner of fiction’s Orange Prize, Helen Dunmore was as spellbinding a storyteller in her poetry as in her novels. Glad of These Times is full of haunting, joyous and wry narratives. These poems explore the fleetingness of life, its sweetness and intensity, the short time we have on earth and the pleasures of the earth, and death as the frame which sharpens everything and gives it shape.
Glad of These Times was Helen Dunmore’s first poetry book after Out of the Blue: Poems 1975-2001, her comprehensive selection drawing on seven previous collections. It brings together poems of great lyricism, feeling and artistry. It has since been followed by The Malarkey (2012) and by her tenth and final collection, Inside the Wave.
‘Dunmore is a particularly lucid writer, and not simply because her poems are so often filled with the play of light. Her language is bare and clean; her forms balladic and unobtrusive… Dunmore seeks to draw attention, not to her mastery of craft, but to her subject and the intricate, original, patterns of her thought…These poems are light-boned, but strong: elegant, complex, fully-turned unions of image, thought and sound. In these times, we should be glad of this voice’ – Kate Clanchy, Guardian.
‘An electrifying and original talent, a writer whose style is characterised by a lyrical, dreamy intensity’ – Guardian.
'One of this country’s finest literary talents' - Daily Telegraph.
'Dunmore gets a wonderful balance between delicate, exact, surprising language and very strong thought – which may be bitter, sardonic, or violent, tender, or wildly imaginative, but is always generous …A lovely poetic electricity runs through her poems' – Sean O'Brien & Ruth Padel, PBS Bulletin.
'This is a poet whose words can be savoured on the tongue' – Iain Crichton Smith, Glasgow Herald.
Helen Dunmore reads six poems
Filmed at her home in Bristol in June 2007, Helen Dunmore reads six poems: Wild strawberries’, ‘When You’ve Got’, ‘Candle poem’, ‘City lilacs’, 'Glad of these times' and ‘Dolphins whistling’ from Out of the Blue: Poems 1975-2001 (2001) and Glad of These Times (2007). This film is from the DVD-book In Person: 30 Poets, filmed by Pamela Robertson-Pearce, edited by Neil Astley.