Will Harris takes British poetry into new waters: RENDANG is an astonishing debut. These questing poems rend and render, they tear and they give. Slipping between the everyday and the unreal, between crystalline lyric and a roving, essayistic expansiveness, their shapeshifting delves into the self and its precarious foundations. Unregarded details open out onto dizzying historical vistas. Humdrum encounters leave the subject irrevocably changed. Across nation, race and time, what binds us together, or pulls us apart? You would struggle to find a keener mind at work in the form than Harris’s, and yet these poems are as loving as they are contemplative, passionate in their political commitments. Many are heart-stopping: the kind of poem that makes you put down the book for a while just to breathe. –Sarah Howe
Mixed-Race Superman is typical of what I have come to expect of Will Harris’s writing: inclusive, expansive, nuanced, rigorous, fiercely intelligent, yet wearing that intelligence lightly. The comparisons he makes between Obama and Keanu, Greek myth and American pop culture, alt-right theory and classic philosophy, Superman and Neo are startling, rich, illustrious and utterly, utterly brilliant. This is to be read and re-read, digested, dissected and celebrated. –Inua Ellams
Zany, exuberant and highly original. –Emily Eakin, The New York Times Book Review
An essay about Barack Obama, Keanu Reeves, race science, masculinity, the cult of the hero and the impossibility of self-knowledge.
Published by Peninsula Press in the UK in 2018 and in an expanded edition by Melville House in the US in 2019.
Brilliant poet – troubling and tender. For the price of a (London) pint you can buy yourself a more lasting moral hangover. –Ed Doegar
The real McCoy –Christina Patterson, The Guardian
Published by HappenStance in 2017.
The Complete Works project has changed the literary world measurably, letting in variety not just of race, sex and cultural identity but also of voice, form, attitude, outlook and experience… a wonderfully accessible showcase for thrilling new talent and, overall, a joy to read. –Bidisha, The Poetry Review
Ten: Poets of the New Generation presents the work of ten exciting British poets from diverse backgrounds. It is the third anthology from The Complete Works poetry mentoring scheme, a national programme supporting exceptional black and Asian poets founded by the writer Bernardine Evaristo in 2007. The poets included are: Raymond Antrobus, Omikemi Natacha Bryan, Leonardo Boix, Victoria Adukwei Bulley, Will Harris, Ian Humphreys, Jennifer Lee Tsai, Momtaza Mehri, Yomi Sode and Degna Stone.