Jen Campbell’s first collection The Girl Aquarium explores the realm of rotten fairy tales, the possession of body and the definition of beauty. Weaving between whispered science and circus, she turns a cracked mirror on society and asks who gets to control the twisted tales hiding in the wings.
'Poetry of innocence and wonder. Poetry of darkness and deformation. The poems about girlhood experiences are daringly original.’ – Daljit Nagra
'These poems push and pull you, making strange bedfellows of butchery, freaks, and the inner lives of girls. Her roller-coaster of vivid images threaten to tear the paper.' – Melissa Lee-Houghton
'I am impressed by the boldness, close to wildness, of Jen Campbell’s imagination. As well as being fascinated, I take her very seriously.' – Christopher Reid
'A collection of work that fizzes with linguistic dexterity and original phrasing. Campbell produces a distinctive and absolutely daring poetic space of her own.’ – Ahren Warner
'These poems are not for the faint-hearted but, wow, what a poet.' – Michael Mackmin, editor of The Rialto
‘I can’t help shivering as I read it.’ – Alice Oswald, on ‘On Crucifixion’
Jen Campbell reads ‘Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge’
Jen Campbell reads her poem ‘Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge’ from her Bloodaxe debut collection The Girl Aquarium.
Jen Campbell reads ‘Girl Lunar’
Jen Campbell reads her poem ‘Girl Lunar’ from her Bloodaxe debut collection The Girl Aquarium.
Jen Campbell reads ‘Netted’ (in Geordie)
Jen Campbell reads her poem ‘Netted’ (in Geordie) from her Bloodaxe debut collection The Girl Aquarium.