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Sound Archive

Authors: Nerys Williams

Published by Seren

ISBN: 9781854115386

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Shortlisted for the 2011 Forward Prize for Best First Collection.

Sound Archive is an innovative display of modernist techniques by Welsh poet Nerys Williams.

As we learn from her title poem, 'It takes patience this piercing / of noise in an archive of voices.' The reader is enticed by hints and clues, by tone and rhythm, by fragment and exclamation. These poems build sounds-scapes of imagery, veering away from straightforward narrative. Williams confronts our preconceptions about what it might mean to be a woman writing against the background of two formidable traditions: Welsh-speaking Wales and English literature. A thoughtful, subtle and fascinating first collection.

"Here’s a fine writer who is completely unique in Wales. Nerys Williams... [is] a tremendous addition to the Seren poetry list.”
Robert Minhinnick

Nerys Williams is from Carmarthenshire. She has an MA in Contemporary Poetry and a D.Phil in American Studies. Before her post-graduate studies she worked in the sound department at BBC Wales and as an assistant in mental health care. In 2005 Nerys won the Ted McNulty Prize for Best Single Poem for ‘The Dead Zoo’, which appears in this collection. She is the author of two critical books: The Edinburgh Critical Guide to Contemporary Poetry (2011), and Reading Error: The Lyric and Contemporary Poetry (2007). She now lectures in American Literature at University College, Dublin.
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