The poems span the diapason of intimacies: from tenderness and passion to callousness and unashamed vulgarity. This alteration of tone gives the collection its strong sense of surprise (if not shock) - always a vital ingredient in Howell's poetry - while Dilys Bidewell's images provide the text with windows of visual stimulation as keenly turned and as wicked as the poems.
"It is an erotic text, a celebration of the human body. You could say it is a modern counterpart to the Song of Songs."
Robert Nye on Howell's earlier 'Oslo: A Tantric Ode'
Anthony Howell was born in London in April 1945 and was educated at Leighton Park, a Quaker school in Berkshire. By 1966 he was dancing with the Royal Ballet. He left ballet shortly after, however, in order to concentrate on his writing. In 1973 he was a member of the International Writing Program in Iowa. In 1974 he founded The Theatre of Mistakes - a company dedicated to poetic drama - which has performed at the Cambridge Poetry Festival and in art galleries and theatres in Europe and America.