In 1997 Carcanet published the Selected Poems with which James Tate (1943-2015) won the Pulitzer Prize and his first British book. Hell, I love everybody: 52 Poems by James Tate re-introduces the poet, providing a poem for every week of the year, every mood and season. It includes work from his first publication, The Lost Pilot, a Yale Younger Poets selection (1967) and all his subsequent books.
He is a most agile poet in a precarious world. Life is alarming, absurd, but properly considered that absurdity reveals, often with laughter, the something else by which we live. All Tate's poems are about our world, our wrecked, vexed love for it.
Tate was described as a surrealist. If he is, that surrealism issues in a vision of a world delivered back to itself by candour. John Ashbery wrote of 'his genius: passionate, humane, funny, tragic, and always surprising and mind-delighting'.