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Ex Libris

by David Hughes

‘Far above us, through the cloud-wrack, one bright star.’

David Hughes shared his love of English Literature with hundreds of students during his thirty years of teaching. His own writing – around two hundred finished poems – was for the most part unknown, its ‘diffident, modest’ author only occasionally seeking publication.

Ex Libris is, therefore, a long-awaited first chance for readers to appreciate the breadth and depth of a truly remarkable body of work. Selected and edited with great care by Antony Dunn, the poems are illuminated by a compelling introduction, offering ‘a little privileged insight’ into the circumstances surrounding their creation.

Displaying a fascinating, original approach to subjects such as the impact of war on the individual, the mountainous landscapes of northern Europe and the ecology of school, Ex Libris is a major publication which introduces a significant new voice into the canon of British poetry.


“If you only discover one writer this year, make it David Hughes – his is a poetry of generous precision, grace and gratitude.” — Helen Mort

“A wonderful collection by a poet whose work has been saved from oblivion by an act of love.” — Brian Patten


David Hughes (1952–2011) was born and raised in Liverpool. Between 1975 and 2004, he taught English Literature and Language at St Peter’s School, York.

During his lifetime, David's poetry appeared in a variety of magazines and anthologies, including The North and Poetry Scotland. The first collection of his work, Ex Libris, edited by former St Peter's pupil Antony Dunn, was published in November 2015 by Valley Press.


Edition: Hardback

Date Published: 2015-11-06

ISBN: 9781908853547

Catalogue Number: VP0059

Number of Pages: 128

Cover design by Jamie McGarry

Cover photograph by David Morris

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