The title of Kelly Grovier's third collection, The Lantern Cage, conjures contrasting images of illumination and shadow, warmth and confinement, the burning soul and the material body. The poems it brings together are fascinated by a universe whose meaning flickers dimly across the walls of our experience. Prompted by scenes that occur in life's everyday spaces - city streets and secondhand shops, museum galleries and trains - these are poems that seek to shine a warm light on the mysteries that underlie our existence. This is a world of 'undeciphered sands', 'lost cathedrals', 'buried books', and 'bone machines' - a land where substance and shadow blur. By turns lyrical and philosophical, romantic and playful, The Lantern Cage is a collection located on the margins of vision, where the invisible calculations of being ('algorithms of rain'; 'the long divisions / of suffering') remain unsolvable - a realm whose secrets are kept 'under lough and quay'.
Kelly Grovier was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan and educated at the University of California, Los Angeles. He received his doctorate from Oxford University in 2005 after being awarded a British Marshall Scholarship. Co-founder of the scholarly journal European Romantic Review, he is a regular contributor to the Times Literary Supplement and the Observer. He has written widely on the Romantic poets, especially Wordsworth and Keats, and his biography of London's notorious Newgate prison will be published by John Murray (Hodder) in 2008. In 2004 he was appointed Lecturer in English and Creative Writing at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. His first Carcanet/ OxfordPoets collection A Lens in the Palm was published in 2008 and his second, The Sleepwalker at Sea, in 2011.