Martin Bell was born in Hampshire in 1918. He was the leading member of the 'lost generation' of English poets whose careers were interrupted by the War. He was a prominent member of The Group during the fifties, and a major influence on younger poets like Peter Redgrove and Peter Porter. His poetry reached a wide audience during the sixties through Penguin Modern Poets, and in 1967 he published his Collected Poems: 1937-1966, his first and last book. Bell was also a champion and brilliant translator of French Surrealist poets. He died in poverty in Leeds in 1978.