Matthew Mead began publishing his poetry in the 1960s. By then he had, as Peter Riley noted, `located a sense of poetry for which he drew widely from Anglo-American writing, avoiding any programmes of allegiance.’ Over the years he has published five collections of poetry. As he once wrote, `I have tried not to avoid what has happened in poetry and psycho-politics during this [20th] century.’
In his essay which is appended to this collection, Dick Davis analyses the special and uncommon qualities of Mead’s poetry, concluding `His tone is unmistakable, and once encountered it is never forgotten.’
Matthew Mead was born in Buckinghamshire in 1924. He served in the British Army from 1942 to 1947 and since 1962 he has lived in Germany. Word for Word (Anvil, 2008) is a selection of the German poetry translations he has made with his wife Ruth, including such poets as Horst Bienek, Johannes Bobrowski and Heinz Winfried Sabais.