Jo Shapcott

Poet and editor

Her collection Electroplating the Baby (1988) won the Commonwealth Poetry Prize for Best First Collection, while My Life Asleep (1998) won the Forward Prize for Best Collection. Her most recent volume, Of Mutability (2010), won the Costa Book Award. In 2011 Jo Shapcott was awarded the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry.

What’s the matter? You are right. You are wrong.
Things are going well (badly). Am I disturbing you?
From ‘Phrase Book’ in Phrase Book (Oxford: OUP, 1992)


The problem is not living together, pulling together,
the problem is dying ...
From ‘War and Peace’ in Atlanta Review (Spring/Summer 1998)


Jo Shapcott
by Madeleine Waller
C-type colour print, 12 September 2006
NPG x132073
© Madeleine Waller / National Portrait Gallery, London