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Poetry Playback · Vertigo & Ghost by Fiona Benson

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Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art

14 Wharf Road

London

N1 7RW

United Kingdom

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Doors open at 6.30pm, with light refreshments served. Reading will start at 7pm and end at 8pm.

Poetry Playback is a new reading series in which a poet is invited to read from an exemplary new work in its entirety, from start to finish, as a single, sustained performance.

One of the most discussed poetry books of 2019, Fiona Benson’s Vertigo & Ghost is a dark and unsettling breakthrough collection, bringing together poems of the natural world, depression, the body, migration and child/parenthood. Encircling provocatively around its remarkable and shocking central sequence of ‘Zeus’ poems, it is a mind-bending retelling of Greek mythology that examines post-traumatic change and the physical effects of sexual violence on its victims.

‘and there will be no catching us,

and no harm will come,

so keep close daughters

in the woods where we run


for we are tracks in the dew

vanishing at dawn,

we are mist, we are rain,

we are gone.’

– from ‘Wood Song’


Fiona Benson (b. 1978, Wroughton, Wiltshire) began keeping a special notebook for poetry, as distinct from song lyrics, at the age of 17. A Faber New Poet, her first collection, Bright Travellers (Cape), won the Seamus Heaney Prize. Her second collection, Vertigo & Ghost (Cape), was published earlier this year.

Poetry Playbacks are co-produced with Poetry School. Founded in 1997, Poetry School is a national arts organisation providing inspiring tuition and opportunities for poets and poetry audiences.

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Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art

14 Wharf Road

London

N1 7RW

United Kingdom

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Refunds up to 1 day before event

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