The Mower: New & Selected Poems
New & Selected Poems
This selection, chosen by Andrew Motion himself from three decades of work, is an outstanding representation of the British poet’s varied body of work—elegies, sonnets, poems of social and political observation, and unsentimental poems about childhood, post-war England, the natural world.
About his poetry, Motion has observed: “I want my writing to be as clear as water. No ornate language; very few obvious tricks. I want readers to be able to see all the way down through its surfaces into the swamp. I want them to feel they’re in a world they thought they knew, but which turns out to be stranger, more charged, more disturbed than they realized. In truth, creating this world is a more theatrical operation than the writing admits, and it’s this discretion about strong feeling, and strong feeling itself, which keeps drawing me back to the writers I most admire: Wordsworth, Edward Thomas, Philip Larkin.”
A significant and consistent feature of Motion’s work, throughout his shifts in style and changes in imaginative topographies, is his signature clarity of observation, his unwillingness to sacrifice intelligibility or embrace opacity. “The best poems,” Motion has said, “are those which speak to us about the important things in our lives in a way that we never forget.”
Andrew Motion was a British Poet Laureate whose poetry and prose has received numerous honors, including the Arvon/Observer Prize, the John Llewelyn Rhys Prize, and the Dylan Thomas Prize.