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Flora Poetica: The Chatto Book of Botanical Verse

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Published by Chatto & Windus, part of Vintage Publishing

Format: Paperback


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EAN: 9780701169237
Published: 1 May 2003


About the book


This beautiful anthology brings together over 250 poems about flowers, plants and trees from eight centuries of writing in English, creating a rich bouquet of intriguing juxtapositions. Fourteenth-century lyrics sit next to poems of the twenty-first century; celebrations of plants native to the English soil share the volume with more exotic plant poetry.

There are thirty poems about roses, by poets as diverse as Shakespeare, Dorothy Parker and the South African, Seitlhamo Motsapi; but there are also sections devoted to more unusual plants such as the mandrake, the starapple and the tamarind.

An ex-gardener, the celebrated poet Sarah Maguire brings her extensive horticultural knowledge to bear on all the poems, arranging them into botanical families, identifying the plants being written about and writing a fascinating introduction. Whether you are a poetry lover, a gardener, a botanist, or simply the purchaser of the occasional bunch of flowers, this unique anthology allows you to luxuriate amidst the world's flora.

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What the critics say

As entrancing as the lost gardens of Heligan... This sumptuous book is a historical revelation too, and shows how the history of flowers goes hand in hand with the history of English poetry... I cannot imagine an anthology anyone would enjoy more
- Independent

One of the most rewarding anthologies of recent years
- Scotsman

An excellent and stimulating anthology
- Daily Telegraph

Beautifully assembled
- Sunday Times

About the Author

Sarah Maguire's three volumes of poetry, Spilt Milk, The Invisible Mender and The Florist's at Midnight, have brought her much acclaim. Formerly poet in residence at the Chelsea Physic Garden, she is currently the Writing Fellow at the School of Oriental and African Studies. She is much in demand at readings and festivals and frequently broadcasts on BBC Radio 3 and 4.

Sarah Maguire

More about Sarah Maguire

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