In this delightful homage to the now unfashionable Neapolitan poet, two contemporary poets who share a fascination with his work present their selection of fresh versions from his best-known collection. In their introductions they explore the background to his work and the qualities, literary and human, which drew them to him.
Publius Papinius Statius (c. 45-96 AD) was a prize-winning poet whose reputation remained high until well into the Middle Ages. He featured both in Chaucer's House of Fame (as 'Stace') and in Dante's Divine Comedy, where he is called 'il dolce poeta'.Anthony Howell, born in 1945, is well known as a performance artist and as poet. He has published eleven collections of poetry, several A- including his Selected Poems (2000) and Dancers in Daylight (2003) A- with Anvil, as well as a novel and other prose works.Bill Shepherd, born in 1935, is a therapeutic counsellor. His Horace: The Complete Odes and Epodes and Propertius: The Poems were published as Penguin Classics in the 1980s. Several collections of his poetry have appeared, including three from Anvil. His most recent is Mother's Milk (Menard, 2006).