Jenny Joseph

Scope and Content

Consists of letters and proofs relating to the published poetry works of Jenny Joseph.

Administrative / Biographical History

Jenny Joseph was born in Birmingham in 1932. She was first published by John Lehmann in the 1950s. Her first book of poems, The Unlooked-for Season (1960), won her an Eric Gregory Award, and she won a Cholmondeley Award for her second collection, Rose in the Afternoon (1974). Two further collections followed from Secker & Warburg, The Thinking Heart (1978) and Beyond Descartes (1983). Her Selected Poems was published by Bloodaxe Books in 1992, drawing on these four books. She is best-known for her poem 'Warning', a dramatic monologue in which a young woman talks of her fantasies of old age, voted Britain's favourite modern poem in a BBC poll in 2006. First published in Rose in the Afternoon, 'Warning' is included in her Bloodaxe Selected Poems: to view of her reading the poem, click on that page.

Her other books include: Persephone (Bloodaxe Books, 1986), winner of the James Tait Black Memorial Prize; Beached Boats (Enitharmon Press, 1991), a collaboration with photographer Robert Mitchell; Ghosts and other company (Bloodaxe Books, 1995); a book of prose, Extended Similes (Bloodaxe Books, 1997), All the Things I See (Macmillan Children’s Books, 2000); a gardening memoir, Led by the Nose: A Garden of Smells (Souvenir Press, 2002); a collection of new and later selected poems, Extreme of things (Bloodaxe Books, 2006); and Nothing Like Love (Enitharmon Press, 2010), a selection of her love poems.

She lives in Gloucestershire.

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