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Ken Smith (Kenneth John Smith) Biography

(1938–2003), (Kenneth John Smith), Stand, Inside Time, The Pity, The Poet Reclining: Selected Poems 1962–1980

British poet, born in Rudston, Yorkshire, educated at the University of Leeds. In 1963 he became a co-editor of Stand magazine. He has worked widely as a teacher of creative writing in Britain and the USA; his experiences as writer-in-residence at Wormwood Scrubs prison from 1985 to 1987 resulted in the prose account of prison life in Inside Time (1989). The Pity (1967), his first collection of poetry, was well received, the assured cadences of its bleak lyricism indicating the individuality of tone that characterizes his work. Subsequent collections include The Poet Reclining: Selected Poems 1962–1980 (1982), Terra (1986), Wormwood (1987), The Heart, the Border (1990), and Tender to the Queen of Spades (1993). Smith's writing sustains its concern with human behaviour and the interactions of the individual and society through a wide range of emotional and imaginative registers. His publications also include Berlin: Coming in from the Cold (1990), a documentary study of the aftermath of the opening of the Berlin Wall.

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Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: Lemn Sissay Biography to Southwold Suffolk