Memoirs of a Jobbing Poet
Published by Smith/Doorstop (The Poetry Business)
Gerard Benson’s vivid, entertaining and occasionally flamboyant memoir is a testament to a generous talent dedicated to poetry and to life. Besides writing numerous books, Gerard made his mark in particular in theatre (as an actor and at The Central School) and in performances with The Barrow Poets and at the Royal Festival Hall. He was also one of the prime movers of the iconic public arts scheme, Poems on The Underground.
Gerard Benson published ten collections of poems and appeared in over a hundred anthologies and many magazines. As a member of The Barrow Poets he gave literally thousands of readings, both live and in the media. He was the first (20th Century) poet-in-residence at The Wordsworth Trust, and a brilliant tutor on countless residential courses.
Gerard held a number of British Council appointments and was recorded in early 2014 for the Poetry Archive. His work recieved several prizes, including the Signal Poetry Award, and he was nominated for the Carnegie Medal. For many years he was Bradford's first (and only) Poet Laureate. Gerard died in April 2014, just after his 83rd birthday.