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ISBN:
9780954407520
Categories
Fiction, Poetry
Imprint
Polygon
Publication Date
01 January 2005
Format
Paperback (also available as an eBook)
Status
Available for Sale
Publisher
Birlinn Ltd
Extent
144

The Colour of Black and White

Poems 1984-2003
by Liz Lochhead - Find out more about the author

 

 

eBook also available at the iBookstore.

'An inspirational presence in British poetry – funny, feisty, female, full of feeling' - Carol Ann Duffy

The poems within this remarkable collection are often poems of love or death and iconic figures, Jungian archetypes, animus figures with strong outlines, harsh comfort and, often, voices of their own which dominate the first, the ’title’, section of the book.

Here you can find poems that are both autobiographical or entirely fictional set in Liz Lochhead’s native rural/industrial Lanarkshire. There are also poems dedicated to other poets and a section of the rude and the rhyming, the out-loud, boldly revealing Lochhead’s interest in ’unrespectable’ poetry, in black prison ’toasts’, in recitations, folk-poems and music hall monologues. The colour of both the black and the white.

The collaboration with the printmaker Willie Rodger was also an essential part of the making of this book. Lochhead, long an admirer of Rodger’s work, felt strongly that he was a kindred spirit and his poetically pared down and essential lino cuts accentuate the positive and the negative, the black and the white.

Liz Lochhead was born in Motherwell in 1947. While studying Drawing and Painting at the Glasgow School of Art she began to write seriously, gradually losing her way with her initial dream of becoming a painter. Her first book of poetry, Memo for Spring, was published in 1972 and sold 5,000 copies. The Scottish-Canadian Writers Exchange Fellowship,1978–9, marked her transition to full-time writer.

Since her first full-length play Blood and Ice appeared in 1984 she has written numerous original plays and many adaptations from Molière, Chekhov, Euripides and Sophocles. Her best known original plays include: Mary Queen of Scots Got Her Head Chopped Off, Perfect Days and the Saltire Society Scottish Book of the Year Award-winning Medea (Nick Hern, 2000). Her poetry collections include: Dreaming Frankenstein (Polygon, 1984), True Confessions and New Clichés (Polygon, 1985), Bagpipe Muzak (Penguin, 1991), The Colour of Black & White (Polygon, 2003) and A Choosing (Polygon, 2011). In 2005 Liz became Poet Laureate of Glasgow, and in 2011 she was appointed Scotland’s Makar, succeeding Edwin Morgan. Liz Lochhead was awarded the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry (2015). Liz is proud to be Honorary President of the Scottish Poetry Library.

‘Liz Lochhead has made a unique contribution to Scottish poetry. Since the early 1970s she has influenced an entire generation of other writers, bringing a new kind of poetry performance to the stage, as well as a different set of rhythms to the page. From the start, she spoke in her own feisty, female voice, mixing old Scots with new Scots – as aware of Burns as of Morgan – and she did this with a galvanizing spirit and vitality that helped to change the landscape of British poetry’ – Carol Ann Duffy






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