Adam Horovitz

United Kingdom

Adam Horovitz is a poet, journalist and editor. He was born in 1971 in London and raised in Slad, Gloucestershire. He has appeared at numerous festivals and venues around Britain since the early 1990s and his work has appeared in a variety of magazines and anthologies, including 1914: Poetry Remembers (Faber, 2014). He has also been the poet in residence for Glastonbury Festival website (2009) and Borkowski PR company's website (2005 to 2007).

He has released three pamphlets: Next Year in Jerusalem (2004); The Great Unlearning (2009) and Waiting for the Flame (Yew Tree Press, 2014). His first full collection of poems, Turning, was published by Headland in 2011. He was awarded a Hawthornden Fellowship in 2012. His memoir about growing up in Cider with Rosie country, A Thousand Laurie Lees, was published by the History Press in 2014. He was a judge for the Manchester Poetry Prize and the inaugural Bare Fiction poetry prize in 2014.


“Adam Horovitz comes of age as a poet with these vivid poems of love and loss, joy and grief, place and memory. Always, he gives the reader the very taste, colour, detail of a house, a kitchen, the valley, the sounds of a garden through an open door. I welcome this passionate collection, the first of many, I hope.” Gillian Clarke

 

Adam Horovitz was born in 1971 in London and raised in Slad, Gloucestershire. He has released three pamphlets: Next Year in Jerusalem; The Great Unlearning and Waiting for the Flame. His first full collection of poems, Turning, was published by Headland in 2011. He was awarded a Hawthornden Fellowship in 2012. His memoir about growing up in Cider with Rosie country, A Thousand Laurie Lees, was published in 2014.

 

He writes, “Poetry has been in my blood since childhood. Both of my parents (Michael and Frances Horovitz) were poets and it was a natural thing to do. I zig-zagged along in their footsteps as a small boy, writing sweet little poems, as many children can and will if encouraged... The main reason I stayed with poetry, however, would be the death of my mother, Frances Horovitz, in 1983, when I was 12. Her Collected Poems was a last line of communication with her, and you can find numerous nods to it in Turning and A Thousand Laurie Lees.”

 

His works have been received with critical acclaim. "Tactful and tactile, he has his own true voice, speaking his occasionally disturbing material with a light yet firm touch." Anthony Rudolf A review of Turning states, “These sad, beautiful poems eventually lead the poet into acceptance. A brilliant first collection which makes me impatient for its follow-up.” Jody Porter

 

Memory, loss, place and myth are central preoccupations for Adam Horovitz. As in these lines:

 

Last night she saw badgers, he tells me
as we walk to the hospital.

I remember walking with her to see a badger’s sett
on the other side of the valley, the orderly piles of dung,
the cowslips, the dusk.

 

Last night she saw badgers at the end of her bed.

 

There are poems portraying place through a lens of what might be considered traditionally feminine concerns, as in A House Built From Cloth:

 

old stones like teazle teeth
chewing at my feet

 

Adam Horovitz is an assured craftsman, using rhyme and form with subtlety and grace that often complement his evocation of rural landscapes:

 

the moon is an owl; its cries

changing the track of the sea.
The stream sings out in reverse,
a song of solidness, of creak,

 

As R.V. Bailey writes, “You feel every word’s had to survive a terrific grilling before it’s allowed to pass. So what we have here is very bracing, very taut, alive writing.” Rural landscapes feature strongly, but there is nothing nostalgic about Horovitz’s poetry. The poems often unsettle by the way things seem upended or out of kilter, and the play between what happens on the surface and what lies underneath is also strong and fascinating. Downloads, ‘gewgaws, gizmos’ are set against the ‘random melt of stars’ and in Inner City Duende nature creeps in ‘as she slashes the brambling/ arms of friends away.’

 

Adam Horovitz is an accomplished performer of his poems. As well as his moving appearance at Ledbury Poetry Festival he has performed at Glastonbury Festival and all over the UK, as well as being a headliner at poetry slams, including at Cheltenham Festival of Literature Slam.

 

"Adam Horovitz writes poems of great beauty and truth; poems which are earned through experience, suffering and love and deployed in a physical language of scrupulous integrity. He is the real deal." Carol Ann Duffy