Philip Mead is Poet of the Month

Philip Mead ABR OnlineWhich poets have most influenced you?

You learn very different things from different poets, from formal aspects, some of them minute, to whole revelations about what a poem might be. This is always developing, and influences tend to come in waves or moments, with anthologies and magazines, subcultures and discoveries. But there are a lot of poets you keep going back to. You can learn from the astonishing ways Emily Dickinson ends a poem (End-grams?), or how Anna Akhmatova’s images are moving because they’re so commonplace: a shoe-heel, an ashtray, a train station. And influence is a free space, whatever is possible: what can you learn about strange conjunctions, like the Medieval and Dada, in Hugo Ball’s line: ‘Destruction was my Beatrice’? The closest influences are the adventures in poetics that one’s contemporaries are involved in.

Read the rest of this article by subscribing to ABR Online for as little as $10 a month.

We offer a range of subscription options, including print, which can be found by clicking here. If you are already a subscriber, enter your username and password in the ‘Log In’ section in the top right-hand corner of the screen.

If you require assistance, contact us or consult the Frequently Asked Questions page.

Comments (1)

  • Leave a comment

    Having come to the English language late in life made poetry inaccessible for a long time, except for the work of Geoff Page and (needless to say) Judith Wright. I find the intersection between what English and American poets write and what Australians write quite difficult still, but Clive James must take the prize

    Thursday, 07 June 2018 06:37 posted by  Thea Biesheuvel

Leave a comment

Please note that all comments must be approved by ABR and comply with our Terms & Conditions.

NB: If you are an ABR Online subscriber or contributor, you will need to login to ABR Online in order to post a comment. If you have forgotten your login details, or if you receive an error message when trying to submit your comment, please email your comment (and the name of the article to which it relates) to We will review your comment and, subject to approval, we will post it under your name.