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Motion, Sir Andrew Peter

Sir Andrew Peter Motion, 1952–, English poet and biographer, poet laureate of England (1999–2009), grad. University College, Oxford (B.A., 1974; M.Litt., 1977). He writes poems that are both lyrical and succinct, direct yet reticent. Often personal or narrative in character, they frequently treat themes of loss and death. His first volume, The Pleasure Steamers (1978), was greeted with critical acclaim. Other verse collections include Independence (1981), Dangerous Play: Poems 1974–1984 (1984), Natural Causes (1987), The Price of Everything (1994), Salt Water (1997), Public Property (2003, poems written while he was poet laureate), and The Cinder Path (2009). Among his biographies are The Lamberts: George, Constant and Kit (1987), Philip Larkin: A Writer's Life (1993), and Keats (1997). His autobiographical prose includes essays in Ways of Life: On Places, Painters and Poets (2008). and has written the novels The Invention of Dr. Cake (2003) and Silver (2012), a sequel to Treasure Island. Motion has taught at the Univ. of Hull (1976–81), the Univ. of East Anglia (1995–2003), and Royal Holloway College, Univ. of London (2003–), and has worked as a poetry editor. He was knighted in 2009.

See his memoir (2006).

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