OpenAIRE is about to release its new face with lots of new content and services.
During September, you may notice downtime in services, while some functionalities (e.g. user registration, login, validation, claiming) will be temporarily disabled.
We apologize for the inconvenience, please stay tuned!
For further information please contact helpdesk[at]

fbtwitterlinkedinvimeoflicker grey 14rssslideshare1
Daniel Weston (2016)
Publisher: Open Library of Humanities
Journal: C21 Literature: Journal of 21st-century Writings
Languages: English
Types: Article
Subjects: Kathleen Jamie, P, ecology, Jen Hadfield, form, lyric, anthropocentrism, Language and Literature, ecocriticism, Jo Shapcott
Ecology is currently coming under increasing poetic scrutiny in a range of terms (landscape, place, environment). Critical responses to this poetry commonly assume a relationship between form and content, wherein textual ecology – the shape of the poem on the page, the spatial and sonic relationship that its parts bear to one another – mimics or otherwise expresses the ecology that the poem describes. Most often, this has been taken to mean that a freer verse style reflects real-world ecologies better by escaping the artificial, cultural constructs of metered verse, and replacing them with more ‘natural’ free verse rhythms. The role of the lyric ‘I’ has also come under examination in much of this poetry and in accompanying criticism: experimental landscape poetry often dispenses with its explicit presence in the poem (even if its implicit influence is much more difficult to eradicate). However, these lines of thinking might not take advantage of the fullest sense of ‘ecology’. \ud This article argues that the continued presence of inherited (‘traditional’) poetic forms (metres and rhythms) has been overlooked in contemporary poetry addressing this set of concerns. A number of poets are noticing the way in which form can be harnessed – adapted rather than slavishly adhered to – in creating poetic ecologies. In particular, I look at sonnets or sonnet-like forms in recent poems explicitly concerned with nature, place, and environment by Jo Shapcott, Jen Hadfield, and Kathleen Jamie. In light of the environmental concerns that these poets address, the ghost of metre to be found in their work might signal an uneasy relationship between human, ‘cultural’ and non-human, ‘natural’ actors in ecology. I aim to notice a trend in contemporary poetic ecologies and offer redress to the ways in which a return to form might have been overlooked in critical discussions of the topic.
  • The results below are discovered through our pilot algorithms. Let us know how we are doing!

    • Adorno, T., 1991. Notes to Literature. Volume One. Tiedermann, R. (Ed.), Translated by Shierry Weber Nicholson. New York: Columbia University Press.
    • Alexander, N. and Cooper, D., 2013. Poetry and Geography: Space and Place in Postwar Poetry. Liverpool: Liverpool University Press. DOI: liverpool/9781846318641.001.0001
    • Aristotle., 2013. Poetics. Translated by Anthony Kenny. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    • Bakhtin, M.M., 1989. The Dialogic Imagination: Four Essays by M.M. Bakhtin. Holquist, M. (Ed.). Austin: University of Texas Press.
    • Bate, J., 2000. The Song of the Earth. London: Picador.
    • Bloom, H., 1997. TheAnxietyofInluence:ATheoryofPoetry . 2nd edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    • Bloomfield, M., 2013. Landscaping the page: British open-field poetics and environmental aesthetics. Green Letters: Studies in Ecocriticism, 17: 121-136.
    • Brewster, S., 2009. Lyric. Abingdon: Routledge.
    • Clark, T., 2011. The Cambridge Introduction to Literature and the Environment. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    • Collins, L., 2011. 'Towards a Brink:' The Poetry of Kathleen Jamie and Environmental Crisis. In Karhio, A., Crossan, S. and Armstrong, C.I. (Eds.), Crisis and Contemporary Poetry. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 150-166.
    • Dowson, J. and Entwhistle, A., 2005. A History of Twentieth-Century British Women's Poetry. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    • Eliot, T.S., 1953. Selected Essays. Edited by John Hayward. London: Penguin.
    • Flint, F.S., 1972. Imagisme. In Jones, P. (Ed.), Imagist Poetry, London: Penguin, pp. 129-130.
    • Gairn, L., 2008. Ecology and Modern Scottish Literature. Edinburgh: Edinburgh UniversityPress.DOI:
    • Gander, F. and Kinsella, J., 2012. Redstart: An Ecological Poetics. Iowa City, IA: University of Iowa Press.
    • Garrard, G., 2004. Ecocriticism. Abingdon: Routledge.
    • Hadfield, J., 2008. Nigh-No-Place. Newcastle: Bloodaxe.
    • Jamie, K., N.d. Author Statement. British Council Literature website. Available at (Accessed 2 April 2014).
    • Jamie, K., 2005. Findings. London: Sort Of Books.
    • Jamie, K., 2012. The Overhaul. London: Picador.
    • Kerridge, R., 2007. Climate Change and Contemporary Modernist Poetry. In Lopez, T. and Caleshu, A. (Eds.), Poetry and Public Language. Exeter: Shearsman Books, pp. 131-148.
    • Macfarlane, R., 2011. Meshed and weathered. Guardian Review, 16 April 2011.
    • Morton, T., 2007. Ecology Without Nature. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
    • Perloff, M., 2002. 21st-Century Modernism: The “New” Poetics. Oxford: Blackwell.
    • Phillips, J., 2001. The Shape-Shifter: Janet Phillips interviews Jo Shapcott. Poetry Review, 91: 18-21.
    • Pound, E., 1972. Preface to Some Imagist Poets 1915. In Jones, P. (Ed.), Imagist Poetry. London: Penguin, pp. 134-136.
    • Rees-Jones, D., 2013. 'Wanderer, incomer, borderer / liar, mother of everything I see:' Jo Shapcott's Engagement with Landscape, Art, and Poetry. In Alexander, N. and Cooper, D. (Eds.), Poetry and Geography: Space and Place in Post-war Poetry. Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, pp. 163-177. DOI: liverpool/9781846318641.003.0012
    • Sampson, F. Editorial. Poetry Review, 102: 1.
    • Satterfield, J., 1997. Pavlova's Physics: The Poems of Jo Shapcott. The Antioch Review, 55: 213-221.
    • Scott, K., 2011. In the nature of things. Guardian Review. Available at http://www. (18 June 2005, Accessed 21 January 2011).
    • Shapcott, J., 2000. Confounding Geography. In Mark, A. and Rees-Jones, D. (Eds.), Contemporary Women's Poetry: Reading/Writing/Practice. Basingstoke: Macmillan, pp. 40-46.
    • Shapcott, J., 2010. Of Mutability. London: Faber.
    • Tarlo, H., 2007. Radical Landscapes: Experiment and Environment in Contemporary Poetry. Jacket, 32. Available at (Accessed 7 February 2014).
    • Tarlo, H. (ed.), 2011. The Ground Aslant: An Anthology of Radical Landscape Poetry. Exeter: Shearsman.
    • Whatmore, S., 2002. Hybrid Geographies: natures, cultures, spaces. London: Sage.
    • Williams, D.G., 1995. Responses to Elizabeth Bishop: Anne Stevenson, Eavan Boland and Jo Shapcott. English, 44: 229-245. DOI: english/44.180.229
    • Williams, R., 1983. Keywords: A vocabulary of culture and society. London: Fontana.
    • Wordsworth, W., 2000. The Major Works. Gill, S. (Ed.). London: Penguin.
  • No related research data.
  • Discovered through pilot similarity algorithms. Send us your feedback.

Share - Bookmark

Cite this article

Cookies make it easier for us to provide you with our services. With the usage of our services you permit us to use cookies.
More information Ok