Bedouin of the London Evening: Collected Poems & Selected Prose by Rosemary Tonks / ISBN 9781780373614 / paperback from Bloodaxe Books (UK)
In the 1970s, after publishing two extraordinary poetry collections - and six satirical novels - Rosemary Tonks turned her back on the literary world after a series of personal tragedies and medical crises that made her question the value of literature and embark on a restless, self-torturing spiritual quest. This involved totally renouncing poetry and suppressing her own books. Her poetry--published in Notes on Cafes and Bedrooms (1963) and Iliad of Broken Sentences (1967)--is exuberantly sensuous, a hymn to sixties hedonism set amid the bohemian nighttime world of a London reinvented through French poetic influences and sultry Oriental imagery. All her published poetry is now available in this edition for the first time in over 40 years, along with a selection of her prose.
"A fragrant reopening of a bottle stoppered up forty years ago. As an amplification of the furibund poems that stood out a mile in the sheepish anthologies where they appeared."--Poetry
"Tonks was a far superior poet - awesomely sick, wickedly goo...her ugliness is shot through with vital impropriety, a kind of punk feminism that subtly interrogates the empires of English poetry."--Chicago Review
"Tonks consumed the city of London during the bohemian '60s with more elan and euphoria than any British poet of her era."--Rain Taxi