Collected Poems of Roland Mathias, The
Distributed for University of Wales Press
Roland Mathias is one of the most important writers to emerge in Wales since the Second World War. His work as a short-story writer, editor and literary critic is highly regarded, and he has made a notable contribution to the cultural life of Wales as a scholar and historian. However, he is first and foremost a poet. His poetry, which focusses on the intertwined concerns of family, mutability, history and landscape, is characterized by verbal inventiveness, skilful use of metre and honesty of observation.
The Collected Poems of Roland Mathias traces his poetic development, from his first collection, Days Enduring (1942), to his most recent, A Field at Vallorcines (1996). Edited with the full cooperation of the author, it contains a number of previously unpublished works. In the introduction, Sam Adams discusses the fundamental stylistic and thematic aspects of the poetry, while his full annotations throw light on the composition of the poems, offer explanations of the many historical and topographical allusions they contain and help to elucidate occasional obscurities in the writing.
“. . . scrupulously compiled and edited by Sam Adams . . . wider readership and critical discussion of Roland Mathias in Wales are long overdue. With this book, they are now possible. One can only be thankful for its appearance, and grateful to Sam Adams for his role in the labour that has brought it into being . . . It is good to feel that with this book, his poetry is now available to be read more widely, and to enter into the mainstream of the literary culture that he has served so well in many ways.” –Planet
“In concept and execution the book is a worthy tribute to the long and distinguished career of Roland Mathias; it recognizes the value of the poetry and the importance of the poet by treating both with sustained and serious scholarly attention.” –Poetry Wales