This is a guide to works of mine on line (excluding those listed on the Van Valckenborch and Collaborations pages of this site). The best place to keep informed is via my blog Pages. Here.
Above watch me reading at the Sheppard Symposium, March 2017, introduced by Tom Jenks. First I read 'breakout', and this was followed by the first 'translations' of the sonnets of Sir Thomas Wyatt.
Watch me launching Twentieth Century Blues at The Other Room in Manchester on 4th June 2008. Filmed by The Other Room team.
Part One, beginning with ‘A Dirty Poem and a Clean Poem for Roy Fisher’, C20 Blues 59, then ‘From a Stolen Book’ followed by a selection from ‘Empty Diaries’, the sequence with which I continues on the second video.12 minutes. Here.
Part Two, beginning with ‘Empty Diaries 1986, 1987 etc…’ 12 minutes. Here.
Both parts together here.
Also in 2008, I launched Twentieth Century Blues at the Bluecoat and was filmed by Ade Jackson, reading ‘A Dark Study for Lee Harwood’. Just 5 minutes. Here.
At the same reading I performed ‘Smokestack Lightning’, using carpet tapes made for Sub Voicive performances in the early 1990s. Here.
This can be alternatively viewed with the text here.
Much shorter, watch me reading ‘The Bird Poem’ from Berlin Bursts. Less than a minute. Filmed by Andrew Oldham in 2011. Here.
Jeff Hilson and I read Honda Hands here.
And here's my reading at The Other Room, where I read the Flemish poems of Rene Van Valckenborch: https://otherroom.org/videos/or-43-sandeep-parmar-robert-sheppard-rachel-smith-videos/
Two short videos of me reading two transpositions of Wordsworth's sonnets from British Standards may be read here: http://robertsheppard.blogspot.com/2020/05/robert-sheppard-two-transpositions-of.html
Here are three videos (and the texts) of my overdubs of John Keats, also from British Standards, as they appear on Pamenar Press website:
Robert Sheppard (pamenarpress.com)
Again from British Standards, there is an overdub of Hartley Coleridge and one of Thomas Hood, from the section ’14 Standards: Pages: OTD 2020: a version of Horace Smith's 'Ozymandias' was written; it and other 'Standards' appear in The Cafe Review in the USA (robertsheppard.blogspot.com)
There are a number of short videos now on my blog Pages, nearly all of the sonnets of the ‘English Strain’ project. Two poems on Stride: and vids Pages: Two new poems published on Stride (robertsheppard.blogspot.com)
My memory of Alan Halsey and poem are published here: Pages: I.M. Alan Halsey: some thoughts, links, and a poem dedicated to him. (robertsheppard.blogspot.com)
Versions of John Clare may be viewed (again, using the short video facility I began to use in 2020):
Pages: Robert Sheppard: Four new versions of John Clare published in Talking About Strawberries (plus videos and links)
I took part in the online reading and discussion as part of the launch of Newcastle University’s ‘Defences of Poetry’ celebration, on poetics and Shelley's 'Defence' and poetry today. HERE: New Defences of Poetry: A Reading - YouTube
I read a selection of my work on the splendid Archive of the Now here. Or you may select from the following links:
- 'History or Sleep'
- 'Internal Exile 1'
- 'Internal Exile 3'
- 'National Security, Huyton 1940'
- 'Only the Eyes are Left (for Mina Loy)'
- 'Small Voice'
- from 'Empty Diaries': 1905, 1936, 1954, 1968
My April 2015 reading for High Zero readings in Brighton was recorded and it may be accessed here: https://www.hizero.org/readings/33
Poetry and Prose
An early poem TOMBLAND (1979) may be read here.
Three early 1980s poems were recovered, in 2022-3, beginning here: https://robertsheppard.blogspot.com/2023/06/recovered-poems-from-1980s-part-one.html
(follow links form this first post to the second and third).
Some poems from Twentieth Century Blues were published on Lynx during relative early days of the internet. Note the antique print quality. Here.
Another part of Twentieth Century Blues, 'Implosive Samples: Exploded Sestina’ appears here:
'Empty Diary 1920' from Empty Diaries (as in Twentieth Century Blues) may be read and I may be viewed reading it here:
Parody and Pastoral’ (a poem for Veronica Forrest-Thomson), from Hymns to God, appears here:
The complete texts of my ‘Reading the Reader’, a prose reading of The Reader, also from Hymns to the God, is here on Great Works.
My ambulatory/site-specific text Sudley House was realised as a guided tour/performance at Sudley House, Mossley Hill, Liverpool, in four shows on 6 and 12 November 2004, with Scott Thurston as second voice and presence. The performance text may be read here, again on Great Works. Click at the top from the page you find there to Preamble to Instructions before reading on. The final, condensed version may be read here:
Some sonnets from Warrant Error and other poems may be seen on the Eyewear feature on my work, here. More, here: from Warrant Error:
The introductory three poems from Warrant Error may be read on Intercapillary Space here.
Two contrasting sonnets were published here, in English, the journal of the English Association, but long before I was elected a Fellow.
Three poems about Riga from Berlin Bursts are presented here. One of these, 'Prison Camp Violin, Riga' was picked as the Guardian poem of the week in July 2018. You can read the poem, and Carol Rumens' astute analysis HERE. And watch me read it here: http://robertsheppard.blogspot.com/2020/01/prison-camp-violin-riga-anthologised-in.html
Here are two parts of the third part of Words Out of Time called 'When', on Blackbox Manifold: Blackbox Manifold - Robert Sheppard (sheffield.ac.uk). Or:
Some parts of Unfinish appear on Otoliths here. And there's more work here: otoliths (the-otolith.blogspot.com)
Two very different poems, my 'Ern Malley Suite' and my homage to Philip Jeck, 'Spectres of Breath' were published together in Blazebox here.
All the poems 'de-selected' from my Selected Poems History or Sleep are accessible here. (They were de-selected for various reasons that you can read about.)
Empty Diaries is a long sequence that ran through Twentieth Century Blues and into the current century's poems: 1901- and ongoing (again after a break of a decade)! The final six appeared in a wonderful edition of Blackbox Manifold: Blackbox Manifold - Robert Sheppard (sheffield.ac.uk)
The 2015 Empty Diary is here Empty Diary 2015
Burnt Journal 1978 is from a series of birthday poems, in this case for the Liverpool poet Eleanor Rees.
Full stop ahead is a response to the art of William Kentridge, a brilliant exhibition at Bluecoat in Liverpool.
Quennet for the Artist Pete Clarke is exactly that. One of Pete's prints appears on the collaboration page.
Texts in memory of Tom Rawoth: my poem 'Tom Beau' is one of the contributions to a special section of Blackbox Manifold here. And see my 1999 poem for him from Twentieth Century Blues, posted I.M. here! Blackbox Manifold - TRM Robert Sheppard (sheffield.ac.uk)
There's a passage from my abandoned novel Thelma here which features Tom Raworth as a character? (Thelma was to be my Scouse version of Breton's Nadja, one passage of which will appear in Doubly Stolen Fire in 2023)
From the ENGLISH STRAIN PROJECT:
Read about Book One, The English Strain here and about Book Two, Bad Idea here . (The final part of Bad Idea is slightly different; called ‘Idea’s Mirror’, it’s described here: https://robertsheppard.blogspot.com/2019/12/my-last-ideas-mirror-post-election-poem.html
Book Three is called British Standards. Unpublished, it is best described here: https://robertsheppard.blogspot.com/2021/04/transpositions-of-hartley-coleridge-end.html
BOOK ONE: THE ENGLISH STRAIN:
One poem from Petrarch 3 may be read here:
From Petrarch 3 the doggie poem (a canine version of Petrarch's third sonnet) may be read here.
And one poem from Breakout, to ‘celebrate’ Brexit, here:
The Fugger of Wonderful Black Words in one of my Milton’s ‘overdubs’, dedicated to Tim Atkins, a sonnet. Another one here: ‘Avenge’, another sonnet, a contrafact on Milton’s ‘Avenge O Lord…’, features elements concerning the (female) Yasidi resistance to IS.
from Hap: Understudies of Thomas Wyatt’s Petrarch, in which Wyatt appears in them as himself and as his modern analogue, a foreign office spy on a secret pre-Brexit mission… (See the second half of the video at the top of this page.
On Blackbox Manifold you can read further transpositions of Wyatt from Hap: Blackbox Manifold - Robert Sheppard (sheffield.ac.uk)
‘It’s Nothing’, is a series of 'English Strain' sonnets that tries to write the self and fails miserably (but deliberately), and some are online here and here, and here. 'The Book of Names; or Late at the Tate', a birthday poem for Peter Hughes, comes from the same sequence and may be read here.
Three more overdubs of the Sussex poems of Charlotte Smith have been published at Anthropocene:
I am pleased to say I have six poems published in BlazeVOX 19, edited by Geoffrey Gatza, four of them poems from ‘The English Strain’ project, versions of the Sussex sonneteer Charlotte Smith, called Elegaic Sonnets. You may get straight to the pages here:
Links to a number of the published poems from Non Disclosure Agreement (the last part of the proposed book of The English Strain) may be accessed here:
More of those ones here: https://mollybloom17.weebly.com/robert-sheppard.html
Some older ‘English Strain’ poems may be found here:
BOOK TWO: BAD IDEA
‘Bad Idea’ Poems may be read online: I’m pleased to say three poems from Bad Idea have now appeared in Monitor on Racism. Find the poems here. http://monitoracism.eu/from-bad-idea/
Four consecutive poems from Bad Idea (XLV-XLVIII) are published together in International Times. They read well with today’s outing. HERE
I write about them here:
5 poems from BAD IDEA here on The Abandoned Playground:
another six located from here:
You may read two poems HERE. http://internationaltimes.it/idea/
Two more poems from the sequence may be read HERE
BOOK THREE: BRITISH STANDARDS
Two poems have been published from ‘Poems of National Independence and Liberty’ here:
Read 'We had a female Passenger who came from Calais' as part of the 2020 'Talking to the Dead' feature on Stride here. I write about the poem and read it on video here. These are versions of Wordsworth. So is this: I have a poem (also videoed) plus my reflection on transposing Wordsworth’s sonnets on
Zwebelsfish: ‘England the Time is Come’:
The whole of ‘Tabitha and Thunderer’, my versionings of Mary Robinson, is online. The first 8 verses (the octet, if you will) may be read on the most recent Blackbox Manifold here:Blackbox Manifold - Robert Sheppard (sheffield.ac.uk) . The last 6 verses are on my blog here: Pages: My 'Tabitha and Thunderer' is published in Blackbox Manifold (robertsheppard.blogspot.com) , along with more detail about ‘Tabitha and Thunderer’ and Mary Robinson, and my work on her sequence, plus videos of the first and last stanzas.
Three overdubs of John Keats, also from British Standards, appear on the Pamenar Press website, with videos!:
Robert Sheppard (pamenarpress.com)
‘When I Have Fears that I May Cease to Be’ is published on Stride here:
A poem by Robert Sheppard | Stride magazine
More Keats! Four sonnets from Weird Syrup: Contrafacts and Counterfactuals from John Keats (part of the ‘British Standards’ volume of The English Strain project) have appeared on Litter, here: Robert Sheppard - from Weird Syrup: Contrafacts and Counterfactuals from John Keats | Litter (littermagazine.com)
Here's a link to one of my versions of John Clare on Beir Bua, including a video, here.
My single transpositions of Gerard Manley Hopkins' ‘The Shepherd’s Brow’, may be read here: https://internationaltimes.it/the-shepherds-brow-fronting-forked-lightning/
I kept thinking I had finished the ‘English Strain’, but kep coming up with serial ‘final poems’ for the project. Here they are:
Pages: FINAL EXTRA: The last poem of The English Strain project is published on INTERNATIONAL TIMES (robertsheppard.blogspot.com)
Here’s ‘Aftershock’ which I thought would be the end of The English Strain project:
but this was:
After Sheppàrd After Shelley: England in 2022 | IT (internationaltimes.it)
The 23rd issue of Blackbox Manifold carries two more poems from Flight Risk, ‘Hammer Glow’ and ‘The Listening Table’, and you can go straight to them: https://blackboxmanifold.sites.sheffield.ac.uk/issues/issues-21-28/issue-23/robert-sheppard
Title poem ‘Flight Risk’ is now published on MIRAonline, that is, the online version of The Mechanics’ Institute Review. You may read it here, and watch me read the first twenty lines here: FLIGHT RISK by Robert Sheppard – MIR Online
The essay Doubly Stolen Fire in his Prosthetic Voice: The Ern Malley Hoax and Fictional Poems in Liverpool may be read here:
My poem ‘Thinking About Dante’ is published in Lyndon Davies’ online magazine Junction Box. Here: https://glasfrynproject.org.uk/w/6712/robert-sheppard-thinking-about-dante/
I was asked to contribute to CLIFF YATES AT 70, website, and I wrote ‘Burnt Journal 1953’ for him, one which I feel pretty pleased with: https://cliffyatestribute.blogspot.com/2022/12/robert-sheppard.html
I was also asked to write the introduction, here:
Introduction by Robert Sheppard | Cliff Yates @ 70 (cliffyatestribute.blogspot.com)
Here's another Burnt Journal poem, this time for 1970: Burnt Journal 1970: Robert Sheppard sees the future in the past | Stride magazine
Here's an elusive poem for Steve Boyland: Song for the Eye: http://stridemagazine.blogspot.com/2023/03/robert-sheppard-resists.html
I have written about the forms of poetics (on poetics) as well as offering the poetics of form (i.e., the poetics of my own work).
‘The Necessity of Poetics’, a morphing essay that has appeared a number of times in a number of forms, is serialised, beginning here : Pages: Robert Sheppard: The Necessity of Poetics 1: The Identification of Poetics
These identifications and definitions of poetics are updated here: Pages: Robert Sheppard: Definitions of Poetics (again)
I attempted a summary history of poetics (in four parts on my blog)
Part One: Poetics and Proto-Poetics
Part Two: Through and after Modernism
Part Three: North American Poetics
Part Four: Some British Poetics
Now to the poetics of my own work!
A very early piece of poetics from 1983 may be read here.
An early poetics piece, ‘Poetic Sequencing and the New’, which laid the foundations for the structure of Twentieth Century Blues, appeared both in Far Language and in Complete Twentieth Century Blues and in Jacket magazine here.
The Anti-Orpheus is only available from Shearsman as a pdf booklet:
Rattling the Bones (for Adrian Clarke), another poetics piece appears here: http://www.softblow.org/robertsheppard.html
A very brief poetics piece, from 2015, a 200 word version of 'The Formal Splinter' was published by Harvey Hux' poetics project here. It now appears in the volume, ed. HL Hix, Counterclaims: Poets and Poetries, Talking Back, McLean, IL/Dublin: Dalkey Archive Press, 2020
Read the 500 word version here.
My lyrical essay Pulse: All a Rhythm is as near as I’ll get to writing to a Treatise on Metre. Part of it appears here.
I write specifically about the poetics of ‘The English Strain’ here, ‘Shifting an Imaginary: Poetics as Anticipation’, http://nclacommunity.org/newdefences/2021/07/16/shifting-an-imaginary-poetics-in-anticipation/
See (watch) the video linked to above (in the video section) on ‘Defences of Poetry’, where I read some of 'Shifting an Imaginary', and talk and discuss with others notions of 'defence' for poetry today.
Read my accompanying “Hanging Out Inside Sonnets: A Text and Anti-Commentary” here.
My ‘Inaugural Lecture’ (2007) hovers around definitions of poetics and presents the poetics of my work of that time. In part, it could be included in the section that follows, since it contains critical readings of Christopher Middleton, (as well as some metapoems of my own).
That is also serialised on Pages, starting here: http://robertsheppard.blogspot.co.uk/2017/03/robert-sheppard-inaugural-lecture-part.html
Gathering from the Past and definitions of poetics on the Creative-Critical website:
John James and Poetics: A Theory of Poetry on Junction Box:
My review ‘Elsewhere and Everywhere, other new (British) poetries’ on Iain Sinclair, ed. Conductors of Chaos: A Poetry Anthology, Picador, 1996, and Maggie O'Sullivan ed. Out of Everywhere: linguistically innovative poetry by women in North America & the UK, Reality Street, 1996, may be found here. This review-article was first published in Critical Survey, Volume 10, Number 1, 1998, and was posted on Lynx not much later.
Far Language - chapter by chapter - may be read here:
The (original) 'Introduction': here.
'Reading Prynne and Others': here.
'Far Language' (MacSweeney) here.
'Irregular Actions' (Allen Fisher) here.
'Timeless Identities' (Roy Fisher) here.
'Utopia Revisited' (John Ash) here.
'Flashlight Propositions' (Robert Sheppard's 1987 poetics) here.
'Education of Desire' (pedadgogic poetics) here.
'Commitment to Openness' (Roy Fisher, Lee Harwood, Tom Raworth) here.
'Poetic Sequencing and the New: Twentieth Century Blues' (poetics) here.
'Buoyant Readings' (J.H. Prynne, Bruce Andrews, Ken Edwards, Aaron Williamson and Gilbert Adair) here.
'Colossal Fragments' (Adrian Clarke) here.
'Tune Me Gold' (Maggie O'Sullivan here.
'Linking the Unlinkable' (poetics of Twentieth Century Blues) here.
'Adhesive Hymns' (Ulli Freer) here.
'Bob Cobbing: Soundings and Sightings' here.
The thoughts around the critical apparatus for the introduction of The Poetry of Saying may be accessed here.
My series of postings on Pages under the title ‘The History of the Other’ was really a re-casting of the historical chapters of The Poetry of Saying and they are best accessed via Peter Philpott’s gathering of them as a set of links here, where each is summarised. The links to the pages are shown below. Link on and scroll until you find the item. But first the thoughts behind its introduction may be read
1. The British Poetry Revival
2. Children of Albion
3. The Seventies: What the Chairman Really Told Tom
4. The 1970s (Continued): Poetry of Place/Poetry of Autonomy
5. Linguistically Innovative Poetry and Small Rooms in London
6. Cambridge: Towards a Community of Risk
7. Performance Writing
8. Out of Everywhere: Be(com)ing a Woman Poet
9. Anthologies and Assemblages
Better links for the above are:
A brief introduction to my longer introduction to the 2015 edition of Cobbing's ABC in Sound may be read here.
My review of Peter Barry’s Poetry Wars ‘Poets Behaving Badly’ was published on Jacket here. It led onto the first essay of When Bad Times which examines the social poetics of the Poetry Society’s forgotten ‘manifesto’.
Read ‘Poetics and the Manifesto’, a critical piece on the contrasting poetics of Pierre Joris and Adrian Clarke, answering the question, Can we contest a poetics?
All the thinking of The Meaning of Form may be accessed at the hub-post, one of the most accessed on my blog, HERE.
Here I muse upon the ‘radicalness’ of Roy Fisher’s poetry: Pages: Robert Sheppard: Actual Poetics: Roy Fisher and the Field of Literary Production
Some recent online reviews may still be found:
‘Sidestreet Tactics: Austerity Measures’ (Adrian Clarke), Stride, January 2019: Sidestreet tactics | Stride magazine
‘Two Bards with One Stone: a review of Alan Halsey and Kelvin Corcoran, Winterreisen.’ Litter , February 2020: Review - "Wintereissen" by Kelvin Corcoran and Alan Halsey | Litter (littermagazine.com)
‘Forming transitory but generous communities’ (SJ Fowler and 54 Others: Nemeses), Stride, April 2020: Forming transitory but generous communities | Stride magazine
‘The art of close reading’ (Marjorie Perloff), Stride, July 2020: The art of close reading | Stride magazine