This is not a book about John Lucas (although he has a walk-on role in several of these poems), but one which seeks to address the subjects which have engaged his attention over the years – England, literature, cricket, criticism, history, teaching, publishing, politics, poetry, beer, jazz…
Speaking English celebrates common experience, the regional and the radical, the demotic and the democratic, the poetics of saying what you mean and the politics of meaning what you say.
Speaking English brings together more than a hundred distinguished poets from four continents – including John Hartley Williams, Jamie McKendrick, Blake Morrison, Robert Nye, Tom Paulin, Peter Porter, Deryn Rees-Jones, Anne Stevenson, Matthew Sweeney and George Szirtes – to celebrate the seventieth birthday of the prolific English critic, editor, publisher and poet John Lucas.
John Lucas is Professor Emeritus at the Universities of Loughborough and Nottingham Trent. He is the author of many scholarly and critical works, including studies of Dickens, John Clare, Arnold Bennett, Ivor Gurney and Elizabeth Gaskell. He has published seven books of poetry, and is the former poetry editor of the New Statesman. His translation of the poems of Egils Saga is an Everyman Modern Classic. He also runs Shoestring Press
Andy Croft has edited several books for Five Leaves and has written many books of poetry and on literary history.
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