Moniza Alvi left Pakistan for England when a few months old. In her early work, she drew on real and imagined homelands in poems which are 'vivid, witty and imbued with unexpected and delicious glimpses of the surreal - this poet's third country' (Maura Dooley). Her less autobiographical later books are concerned not only with divisions between East and West but also with the interplay between inner and outer worlds, imagination and reality, physical and spiritual. Split World includes poems from five previous collections: The Country at My Shoulder (1993), A Bowl of Warm Air (1996), Carrying My Wife (2000), Souls (2002) and How the Stone Found Its Voice (2005), but excludes the poems of Europa (2008) and At the Time of Partition (2013).
'Alvi is a bold surrealist, whose poems open the world up in new, imaginatively absurd ways' - Ruth Padel, Independent.
'Much of Alvi's work engages with a surreal or fantastical world of fractured and partially recovered identity, working through sequences in her most recent poetry' - Deryn Rees-Jones, Modern Women Poets.
'Moniza Alvi's world is a place of wild energy...Alvi's voice has achieved a relaxed naturalness, a fluidity which allows her to present these delicious, extraordinary poems as though it were easy' - Kathleen Jamie & Hugo Williams, PBS Bulletin.
'She is a skilled storyteller, recounting the extraordinary in the voice of the everyday, so that we accept the miraculous as something we need...the overriding impression is of a deft, restrained language carrying ideas with metaphysical wit and seriousness' - Leonie Rushforth, London Magazine.
'One of the few British poets whose work could currently be described as essential reading, not least as we try to grasp what fractures of cultural difference might have contributed to the 7 July bombings.' - Tim Robertson, Magma.