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Amy De'Ath

Amy De'Ath


Amy De'Ath was born in Suffolk in 1985. She studied at the University of East Anglia and in Philadelphia, US, before moving to Australia and then to London. Her poems have appeared in a wide variety of journals in the UK and US, including Esque, Quid and The Rialto, and will feature in the Salt Younger Poets 2011 anthology. She currently lives and works in London, and is Poet-in-Residence at the University of Surrey. In 2011 she will begin work on a PhD in North American contemporary feminist poetry.




Recorded in London, 16 October 2010



  • Erec & Enide (Salt, 2010)
  • Andromeda / The World Works For Me (Crater Press, 2010)


  • Salt Younger Poets (2011)

Sample Text

Poetry for Boys

That the Joy will soon come and make you suffer!

Lay low in the words of the wood,
very subtle, not immune,
lay down in the snow and incline,
you are rest enough and dowry,
in the lay and the spook of an age,
very poor, still glamour,
still further than you think even
more, from the day duly swallow,
to the real green day in the dream,
very full, cracking bough,
the undoing publicity of meaning
all the whole black sky is feeling
the screwing over, resin delight
delightful residual meaning, still night.

I'm a weeping boy and a centaur caving in.
Adventures, find me -- I'm hard to come by.
In the days when mirrors were made of burnished silver
I stayed up late,
in the nearly beautiful night I stood not quite
in the shower plenty natural and the water washed into
the time of my skin.
I imagined how to answer the question of whether
psychic malady is a personal affair. Then I wrung
my hair and dye came out.

If I had the money to dip in being a boy,
if I was Anna O., & fallen into autism or
steeped in prelingual glimpses of Lena's face,
I'd be living system: looped in my own elements.

A system closing talking only to itself.



'It is the world's wild glare that provides the complex heart of Erec & Enide. With wisdom, uncommon wit, and precision, Amy De'Ath's spirited first book unsettles all things to reveal that neither a language nor a body is a closed system. De'Ath's is an inclusive imagination that meets the world with lyric intensity and irony her poems invite us to feel: "stranger, it's a hunger I¹m looking for."' --Peter Gizzi

'Lyrical, local, literary, strong, domestic, delicate, sexy and epic, Amy De'Ath's Erec & Enide also brings the modernity and speed of much recent North American poetry to these too-often inward-looking isles. "In the lay and spook of an age," as she says, there is enough screwing over, glamour, residual meaning and resin delight in these poems to intrigue, excite and entertain even the gloomiest reader. De'Ath's emphatic arrival on the British poetry scene is cause for both hope and celebration.' --Tim Atkins

'While we oscillate between life and death, Amy De'Ath's poetry looks to the whir, the engines and the effects of such daily migrations. She ably slows us to take in and weigh the view, to ask how we construct the "publicity of meaning". De'Ath's is a sensitive search; and while the unearthed may challenge ("opened every cupboard looking for the nature of it"), the unanswerable space is enriching. Erec & Enide is fiery and soft. Let it carry you on wings of seductive metrics and lyric playfulness, below and between timeless narratives.'--Amy King

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