Search
Get a personalised letter from Santa

Raymond Antrobus: Prodigy poet’s new book launches with overseas tour

PUBLISHED: 17:02 24 October 2018 | UPDATED: 17:19 24 October 2018

Raymond Antrobus' book, The Perseverance, launched at The Book Club at the start of the month. Picture: Caleb Femi

Raymond Antrobus' book, The Perseverance, launched at The Book Club at the start of the month. Picture: Caleb Femi

Archant

The Perseverance is a collection of 29 works authored by Hackney-born Antrobus, who is quickly becoming an influential figure in the world of poetry.

The Perseverance is the Poetry Book Society's Choice for Winter 2018The Perseverance is the Poetry Book Society's Choice for Winter 2018

Born in Hackney to an English mother and a Jamaican father, the 31-year-old’s candid work – which explores themes of race, loss, masculinity and his deafness – has earned plenty of plaudits.

Antrobus’ 2017 pamphlet To Sweeten Bitter, which was “written through the grief” of losing his dad, gave notice of an exceptional poetic talent. His latest release, The Perseverance, is even more eagerly anticipated.

The Perseverance is a collection of 29 poems authored by Antrobus and named after the Broadway Market pub his dad used to drink in. It was released earlier this month and has been selected as the Poetry Book Society’s Choice for Winter 2018.

“The Perseverance is a book I’d been trying to write since 2014,” says Antrobus.

“To Sweeten Bitter was a book immersed in grief and love for my father, who came from Jamaica and lived on a council estate in Hackney where I grew up.

“The book was realised when I started working as a poet in resident at Deaf schools and started learning BSL so I could engage with young deaf people.

“As a student of a deaf school myself I realised my deafness was something I had spent most of my life running away from. The Perseverance forced me to run into it and embrace it.”

The book addresses the author’s personal experience as a deaf man while also channelling the stories of historical figures like Helen Keller and Alexander Graham Bell. Antrobus’ poems are kept flowing by illustrations in both British and American sign language.

“The book explores the ideas of being in different states of health, wealth and presence,” he adds.

“So far I’m feeling lucky to have such thoughtful readers who have written to me after reading the book and shared some of their takes.

“Some have said it’s helped them to feel heard.”

Antrobus – in his own words “truly a Hackney boy” – presented his new book on a tour of the UK that kicked off with a launch party at The Book Club. The Australian leg of an overseas tour starts this Sunday, with further dates planned in New Zealand and The Gambia.

“It’s what I have dreamed of for a long time,” he says.

“I’ve had many jobs, but lost a lot of them because of my deafness. Having the opportunities I have today to live and travel as a poet is a blessing, but also it has given me a way to give back to the community that raised me and that is what puts me in a good place.”

For more information, click here.

Latest Hackney Stories

31 minutes ago

Eric Dier is ready to finally return to Portugal in what will be a “very special” occasion when England play in the Nations League Finals next summer.

14:00

Harry Redknapp is currently taking part in the latest series of I’m A Celebrity...Get Me Out Of Here!

11:00

Leyton Orient captain Jobi McAnuff is delighted with his free-kick goal and his side’s fight back to win 3-1 against London rivals Bromley.

Health chiefs have moved to address a multimillion pound overspend at Homerton Hospital.

10:00

Arsenal Women’s Jordan Nobbs has been ruled out of the rest of the WSL season and could miss next summer’s World Cup in France after rupturing her anterior cruciate ligament, writes Joshua Bunting.

Finsbury Park has been stripped of its Green Flag status after a damning “mystery shopper” report by an environmental charity.

08:11

Jessica Naz netted her first goal for Tottenham Ladies in a 1-0 win over old rivals Charlton Athletic Women as her side returned to winning ways, writes Rosie Bonass.

10:20

One of the most popular pantomimes in London returns this Saturday for a landmark production written and directed by Susie McKenna.

PROMOTED CONTENT

Former teacher Steve shares his experiences as a foster carer for teenagers, from dealing with some of their more challenging behaviour, to the rewards of seeing a child develop into a happy and healthy adult

If you are an unpaid carer in Hackney over the age of 25, who would like to get back into work, then Working for Carers can provide the practical assistance and support you need.



Newsletter Sign Up

Hackney Gazette twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read entertainment

Show Job Lists