Just Like That: New & Selected Poems
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Just Like That: New & Selected Poems

128pp  |  978-1-906613-81-5

Price: £9.95

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 From the brilliant 'Being in Bed with Philip Larkin' and the tour-de-force footballing T S Eliot, Peter Carpenter's poems range with wit and insight through teaching, politics and recent history.  Steely Dan are here and so is Cambridge, the Thames and Venice, but above all these are poems about love and family.  Carefully selected, they offer the very best of one our most intelligent and engaging poets.


'A naturally restrained poet, most oblique when most autobiographical, Peter Carpenter is nevertheless deeply troubled by social injustice and so is prepared to risk a plain style; but he makes his plainness interesting.' — John Greening, TLS

'Just Like That is a New and Selected Poems ... a selection of the best poems [that] communicates a sense of confident and growing literary power.' — PN Review


Through the miracle of the smokery,

it comes out fresh on the enamel plate

a full forty years on, stinking the place

to high heaven. I turn it from pipistrelle

to a woman’s leather gloves to giant insect –

a stag beetle, cleavered, legs in the air, opening up

like a good short story.

                                      Its armoury of bones

and deflector shields is surely cast in bronze.

A spine to work under and lift clear

with the line of the knife before the flesh

can be enjoyed: the intricacies  of a whole life,

worth taking time over.

                                      My long-dead grandfather

puts it there in front of me. Windows run

with condensation. The grill’s still on for toast.

I make a start as he’s creasing flat his Mirror.

More by Peter Carpenter

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