Edwin Brock

Edwin Brock (1927-1997) was a British poet. Born into a working class London family, Brock discovered poetry when he picked up an anthology during idle time while serving in World War II. He taught himself how to write verse and spent many years writing while working as a policeman and, later, a successful advertising copywriter. Two of his best-known poems are Five Ways to Kill a Man and Song of the Battery Hen.

The River And The Train

Poetry by Edwin Brock

With The River and the Train, Edwin Brock’s sixth collection to be published by New Directions, this British author shifts his focus from the brutality and desperate compromise of urban existence to the more pastoral though no less complex irony of life in a converted East Anglian granary. The bitter anger of such earlier books as The Blocked Heart (1976) and the prose and verse “Fragments of a Childhood” Here. Now.…
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Here. Now. Always

Poetry by Edwin Brock

Here. Now. Always. is the British poet Edwin Brock’s fifth book to be published in this country in as many years. It is perhaps the most intimate work thus far by this intensely personal and often acerbic writer: a memoir in prose interlaced with elucidating passages of his verse. In short episodic epiphanies, Brock reviews his bitter boyhood, his service in the British navy and on the London police force, the collapse of his first marriage.…
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The Blocked Heart

Poetry by Edwin Brock

The Blocked Heart is the fourth collection by the British poet Edwin Brock to be published in the United States. Reading his most recent verse, one becomes increasingly aware that the author’s pervasive wry melancholy is not so much a passive response to the stress of urban life as a compassionate, virile outburst against it. Here we find, in many ways, a maturing synthesis of his earlier work: the candid, often bitter introspection of Invisibility Is the Art of Survival (1972 ), the more meditative, though no less incisive subtlety of The Portraits The Poses (1973), and the acerbic satire of Paroxisms (1974), a volume which includes illustrations by the poet’s wife, Elizabeth.…
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Paroxisms

Fiction by Edwin Brock

Cynics, says our author, “write books / by Edwin Brock / illustrated by / his wife.” Readers already familiar with the wry, sometimes dour work of the British poet Edwin Brock will recall that his wife, Elizabeth, contributed the jacket illustrations to his two previous collections published here (Invisibility Is the Art of Survival and The Portraits The Poses). Now they have combined their talents and complementary satiric visions to produce “A Guide to the Isms.…
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The Portraits & The Poses

Poetry by Edwin Brock

The publication in 1972 of Invisibility Is the Art of Survival, the author’s own selection of poems from earlier books brought out in England, introduced Edwin Brock to American readers. This new collection, The Portraits & The Poses, will further the acquaintance with a fresh and forceful voice, one which David Ignatow has called “the best in English contemporary poetry.” These are highly personal poems: the “poses,” the postures and bafflements of everyday life as Brock sees it; the “portraits,” pithy vignettes of everyday people and their relationships as he knows them.…
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Invisibility Is The Art Of Survival

Poetry by Edwin Brock

Invisibility Is the Art of Survival marks the first appearance in this country, in book form, of the work of Edwin Brock. Born in London in 1927, Brock says he has spent the subsequent years waiting for something to happen, occupying his time as a sailor, journalist, policeman, and adman, in that order. Yet none of this, he feels, has touched him, “except with a fine patina of invisibility.” Poetry, however, is for him an act of self-definition “which sometimes goes so deep that you become what you have defined.…
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