Becoming a member of the LoveReading community is free.

No catches, no fine print just unadulterated book loving, with your favourite books saved to your own digital bookshelf.

New members get entered into our monthly draw to win £100 to spend in your local bookshop Plus lots lots more…

Find out more

Soft Keys Synopsis

When Corpus won the Whitbread Poetry Award, the judges described it as 'an outstanding, perfectly weighted collection that inspires meditation on the nature of the soul...reading it feels like making an exciting discovery and coming back to an acknowledged classic all at once.' Michael Symmons Roberts' first book, Soft Keys, was the original and most exciting discovery of all. The poems in Soft Keys engage in a search for meaning and order in the everyday and in the extraordinary - a locust officer tracking swarms in an African desert, a hobbyist building a replica of the world out of matchsticks, a chance encounter with the French mystic Simone Weil playing video games in a Torquay arcade... Richly inventive, and written in a wide diversity of poetic forms, Soft Keys looks for those places and moments where the curtain between earth and heaven is thinnest; it was a powerful, arresting debut and the beginning of a remarkable career. As Les Murray said at the time: 'Like Nijinsky, he can leap into the air and stay there. You can reach up and feel the thump of the stage finely persisting in an ankle bone. Roberts is a poet for the new, chastened, unenforcing age of faith that has just dawned.'

Soft Keys Press Reviews

Michael Symmons Roberts' poems are intense and sensual explorations of the moment when the soul quickens to some ice-cracking life. The Christian faith gives Roberts' work an iconography, a deep well of symbolism, that links him with poets like David Jones or Geoffrey Hill. Like them, his work exists to errode whatever conceals that glinting mica of truth... through language at once precise and excitingly resonant -- Adam Thorpe An outstanding writer * Sunday Times * I love Michael Symmons Roberts' poetry. He is a religious poet in a secular age. His work is about connection between the things of the spirit and the things of the world. And his work is about transcendence -- Jeanette Winterson The poems are highly accomplished, constituting an intelligent, courageous attempt to write a contemporary religious poetry, one where God and videogames co-exist. This is very hard to do, but the voice of Soft Keys is genuinely contemporary; the best poems are lit with finely-nuanced details which the imagination can relish. A poem such as The Telex is sure, strange, beautifully judged -- Robert Crawford

Book Information

ISBN: 9780224090018
Publication date: 3rd September 2009
Author: Michael Symmons Roberts
Publisher: Yellow Jersey Press an imprint of Vintage Publishing
Format: Paperback / softback
Pagination: 64 pages
Categories: Poetry by individual poets,

About Michael Symmons Roberts

Michael Symmons Roberts was born in Preston, Lancashire in 1963. He has published six collections of poetry and received a number of accolades including the Forward Prize, the Costa Poetry Award and the Whitbread Poetry Prize. As a librettist, his work has been performed in concert halls and opera houses around the world. An award-winning broadcaster and dramatist, he has published two novels, and is Professor of Poetry at Manchester Metropolitan University. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.

More About Michael Symmons Roberts

More Books By Michael Symmons Roberts

Cover for Drysalter by Michael Symmons Roberts
Cover for Mancunia by Michael Symmons Roberts
Cover for Selected Poems by Michael Symmons Roberts
View All Books By Michael Symmons Roberts

Share this book