An astonishing, energetic reading by Daljit Nagra of his own hugely acclaimed poetry. Winner of the Forward Prize for Best First Collection and the Costa Poetry Award. Shortilsted for the Guardian First Book Award and winner of the South Bank Show, Arts Council Decibel Award 2008.
Look We Have Coming to Dover! is the most acclaimed debut collection of poetry published in recent years as well as one of the most relevant and accessible.
Nagra, whose parents came to England from the Punjab in the 1950s, draws on both English and Indian English traditions to tell stories of alienation, assimilation, aspiration and love, from a stowaway's first footprint on Dover Beach to the disenchantment of subsequent generations. In startlingly newly minted language, with crackling vigour and wicked humour, this collection explores the experience of a second-generation British Punjabi.
The contradictory feelings of dislocation, assimilation and alienation in this "flighty mix-up country" are emphasised by the shifts of language from Punjabi English - "She effing at my mum / in all di colours of Punjabi" - to regional and formal English. Nagra's licence with language is invigorating - how could you better describe the first flush of married life than "darling is so pirouetty with us / for whirlwind married month"?
Daljit Nagra was born and raised in West London then Sheffield and currently lives in Willesden, where he works in a secondary school. Look We Have Coming to Dover! won the Forward Prize for Best Individual Poem 2004.