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Tony Harrison: The bard of Beeston

Even at 80, his snarling, trenchant poems still speak up for the voiceless working classes

By Edith Hall   June 2017

Swearing might proliferate in Harrison's work, but that is not because he wants to shock ©British Library Board. All rights reserved/Bridgeman Images

“A hanging newspaper clothes pegs keep open on the kiosk across from the shut, smashed hotel has a whole half-page picture of a poet I know well.”

So, in his acclaimed elegy “Polygons,” published in 2015, does Tony Harrison launch his memorial to his friend Seamus Heaney. News of Heaney’s death came to Harrison when he was convalescing on the rocky precipices around Delphi, making his “coeval…

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