Paul Muldoon's edition of John Donne is published by Faber and Faber in their Poet-to-Poet Series.
The New York Times Book Review features MAGGOT in the "Paperback Row" column of October 23, 2011. "In his 11th collection Muldoon, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Moy Sand and Gravel (2002), applies his acrobatic wit to a wide variety of human experience, especially sex, decay and death."
Paul Muldoon has written the Introduction to this newly published edition from the Folio Society.
Paul Muldoon's new collection, Maggot, was published in the fall of 2010 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (USA) and Faber and Faber (UK).
The most formally ambitious and technically innovative of modern poets, he writes poems like no one else. (Nick Laird, The New York Review of Books)
In his new book, Paul Muldoon uses the techniques of the neoliberal school to nudge American surrealism back towards its roots, shoving it in a more vulgar, wide open, progressive direction. (Jim Feast, Evergreen Review)
The poems offer readings of themselves, foregrounding possible connotations and coincidences. They also digest parts of the other poems in the collection. The first line of "Maggot," for instance, picks up the last line of the preceding poem, while "Loss of Separation" recycles the refrain used in "Maggot." The effect is that one poem seems to evolve from another. (Laura Marsh, The New Republic)
The Irish poet is one of the most prolific, decorated and influential poets of the 21st Century, and he continues to stack up accolades, and titles, at a jaw-dropping pace. (Christine Benedetti, Aspen Daily News)
This book is brilliant. (Gwyneth Lewis, Poetry Review)
Brilliant and brave. (The Selectors, Poetry Book Society Bulletin)
His prowess is about as legendary as a poet's can be these days. (Kelsey Osgood, Baltimore Review)
Muldoon is a mix-master, shuffling together banal and recondite material, along with just about every level of diction you can imagine; he dazzles his way through several registers in the space of a few lines. (Bill Manhire, Poetry London)
Endlessly inventive. (Carmela Ciuraru, Los Angeles Times)
Rich and grim. (Sarah Bennett, Tower Poetry)
Maggot is not an easy read, neither in its subject matter, nor its difficulty; it is 'literary' in its allusions, learned and wide-ranging. (Kym Martindale, Stride Magazine)
For another collection by a present-day master, check out Paul Muldoon's Maggot, which contains some of the Irish-born poet's most gamesome, intrepid, powerful lyric poems. (Meghan O'Rourke, Word Power: The Year's Best Poetry, NPR)
The two essential books of poetry published this year were Seamus Heaney's Human Chain and Paul Muldoon's Maggot. (Ciaran Carson, Belfast Telegraph)
Very little in this collection is in good taste: it's full of violence and indignity, compounded by the clumsy and undignified coupling of something with everything else. (The Chaplain of Brasenose College, TLS)
In Maggot, we find Muldoon offering up many of his familiar neurotic delicacies: renovated cliches, shibboleths, doubles and doppelgangers, mushrooms, hyperlinked times and locations, incredible and often hilarious rhymes, and the blending of violence and decadence, sometimes, like a fractal, all at once, as when we find him "proposing that the KGB garrotte/ might well be a refinement of the Scythian torc." As its title suggests, the Muldoon of Maggot is both more macabre and more fancy-free than we've ever seen him. (Michael Lista, The Best Books of 2010, National Post)
Muldoon is one of those poets that even devoted readers often trail behind by a book or two. I was still digesting Muldoon's marvelous Horse Latitudes when this new book appeared. It is grim, grave, swashbuckling, and made from the marrow of English: there may be no more adaptable strong style in the language than Muldoon's. (Dan Chiasson, The New Yorker)
Muldoon is here at the peak of his powers. This is daring poetry, ambitious enough to want to swallow the language whole and spit it out in unfamiliar chronologies of whimsy. (Anis Shivani, Huffington Post)
Dazzling. (Felicity Plunkett, The Australian)
Paul Muldoon's Maggot is a brilliant achievement. A marvellous collection, where Muldoon sings in the ether. (Tom Paulin, Financial Times Books of the Year)
Though he's lived in America for more than two decades, he's still the most influential poet after Seamus Heaney—a lot of young English and Irish poets come out of his vest pocket, though they're not half so clever as the real thing. Muldoon turns sixty next year, but it would be too much to expect this perennially boyish writer to slow down. (William Logan, The New Criterion)
One of our most fiercely compelling and necessary poets. (Piotr Florczyk, World Literature Today)
A serious candidate for best poetry book of the year. (Anis Shivani, Kansas City Star)
Muldoon has always resembled a modern metaphysical poet, and the best poems in Maggot are distinguished by their Donne-like wit in the face of death. (Jeremy Noel-Tod, The Telegraph)
The volume is one of the most powerful to be published by him in a career marked by constant lyric inventiveness. (Philip Coleman, The Irish Times)
One of "The 10 Best Books of 2010" (Huffington Post)
An intellectual fairground ride, with daring swoops and hairpin turns of thought. (Adam Newey, The Guardian)
Hugely talented and perennially disconcerting. (Alan Brownjohn, London Sunday Times)
It's Muldoon's fascination with what is difficult coupled with great feats of structural engineering that makes these poems worth reading, and some worth loving. (Peggy Hughes, Scotland on Sunday).
Muldoon has been a major figure in English language poetry for decades. Despite being as established an established poet as the establishment will allow, there is the vivacity in this collection of a poet with a chip on his shoulder and something to prove. Maggot is a rare marriage between the frantic radical energy of a rebellious youth and the sophistication of a master of the form. (Josh Cook, Bookslut)
It is Mr. Muldoon's ability to walk the line between comedy and tragedy, autobiographical and universal, colloquial and stylized language, all with equal grace, that has made him influential. It has also branded him with labels like "postmodernist" and "difficult." Indeed, he is a jester, but only in the sense of Lear's Fool. (Michael H. Miller, New York Observer)
The result is rather like watching a juggler add more and more flaming torches and chainsaws, until it seems impossible for him to keep everything up in the air. (Adam Kirsch, The Barnes and Noble Review)
A teeming, infested book from a teeming, infested mind. It bucks what its author calls "this tiresome trend/ toward peace and calm." (Dwight Garner, The Daily New York Times)
The buoyancy of Muldoon's language overcomes the sobriety of his subjects. Between his constant wordplay and his easy use of rhyme, Muldoon creates a series of poems that are full of exuberance even as they approach the grisliest of topics. (Rachel A. Burns, The Harvard Crimson)
Raised in Northern Ireland and long resident in New Jersey, Muldoon remains one of very few poets who commands broad and deep respect on both sides of the Atlantic. (Publishers Weekly)
A study of The Poetry of Paul Muldoon by Jefferson Holdridge was published in 2008 by the Liffey Press. Other recent books are Teresa Pinto de Almeida's Percursos de Subversao: A metamorfose e o Jogo na Obra Poetica de Paul Muldoon (Ficha Tecnica, 2009) and Decoding Paul Muldoon by Ryoji Okuda (Shumpusha, 2009)
A portrait of Paul Muldoon by the great Irish filmmaker Sean O'Mordha was broadcast on Radio Telefis Eireann on June 10 2008.
For many people, myself included, Muldoon is the most dazzling poet of our time in the English language and anyone who's been following his career since the 1973 publication of his first collection will have found this portrait--which dispensed with narrative and allowed Muldoon to tell his own story--completely absorbing. (John Boland, Irish Independent)
Plan B was published by Enitharmon Press in 2009.
The world-famous Irish poet's latest volume is a collaboration with the talented Scottish photographer, Norman McBeath, whose black-and-white images (an upright piano rotting in a meadow, an empty sofa, a stone doorway) suit the bitter, brilliant ironies in Muldoon's new poems. (Publishers Weekly)
The dry humor is never far away but there's true pathos, too, in poems that show a more personal side to Muldoon than he has revealed before. (Adam Newey, The Guardian)
Paul Muldoon, who has done so much to reimagine the poet's task, has surpassed himself with this latest collection. (Robert McCrum, The Observer)
It is a thrilling, wild, fairground ride, with few let-ups for the squeamish. (Angela Leighton, TLS)
When the Pie was Opened was published by Sylph Editions in 2008.
Another reminder of Muldoon's extraordinary versatility. (Angela Leighton, TLS)
This fascinating group of poems will, if it all reappears in Muldoon's next collection, be hidden, buried in the sparkle of the surrounding trouvailles. It is a pleasure to read it like this, on its own, and set off among so many feathers as fine as the poet's phrasing. (Alistair Elliot, Translation and Literature)
Horse Latitudes was published by Farrar Straus and Giroux and Faber and Faber in October 2006.
Some of Muldoon's finest poems are collected in Horse Latitudes. (William Bedford, Agenda.)
Paul Muldoon is a force of nature. (Gerard Fanning, The Irish Times)
Horse Latitudes sets the standards for poetry. (Chris Preddle, Poetry Ireland Review)
The most politically expressive and far-reaching and, I would argue, successful of Muldoon's collections to date. (Guinn Batten, Irish Literary Supplement)
Horse Latitudes is my favorite Muldoon volume in years. (David Mason, The Hudson Review)
With Muldoon's most recent outings, from Horse Latitudes through the Oxford lectures to General Admission, the Irish poet proves that the middle stretch need not be bad for all poets as he continues to outrun all his contemporaries, never to be reined in. (Maria Johnston, Contemporary Poetry Review)
Muldoon's tenth book of poetry is the work of a master and marks him as one of the most interesting and important poets writing in English today. (Lilah Hegnauer, The Virginia Quarterly Review)
Horse Latitudes will extend and augment Muldoon's reputation as a master of the quantum leap of linguistic intelligence. But beyond the insistence on playfulness here is an equal counterweight of elegy, anger, love, conflict and doubt. (Ken Babstock, The Toronto Globe and Mail)
No poet is as wicked, as stylish or as fun. (Richard Sanger, Toronto Star)
Muldoon's wit and wordplay can be seen as that, a mask. Is he really serious? Yes indeed, but readers will keep asking the question, as they still do of Jonathan Swift and James Joyce. (Langdon Hammer, New York Times Book Review)
Horse Latitudes is, as we would expect, a brilliant performance; it also offers us an unusually direct insight into some of the passions with which this supposedly detached and manipulative poet burns. (Fran Brearton, Tower Poetry)
Muldoon, whose penchant for weird rhymes, startling juxtapositions and occasional mystification is on full display here, is widely regarded as "difficult", even perverse. Yet Horse Latitudes is the volume I would give to introduce someone to his work. (Gregory Feeley, Philadelphia Inquirer)
When Muldoon is at his best he is one of the most exhilarating of all living poets. (Brian Phillips, Poetry)
This is Muldoon's tenth collection of poems and, as usual, an event. (James Fenton, The Guardian)
Paul Muldoon's Horse Latitudes contains some of his best work, including a wonderful long poem, 'The Old Country', in which every Irish clich? ever heard is both sent up and made magical. (Colm Toibin, Observer Books of the Year)
The most haunting poetry I read this year was in Horse Latitudes, where Paul Muldoon is as often elegiac as playful, but in either mood an artist of consummate judgement. (Roy Foster, TLS Books of the Year)
If Muldoon's lesser poems, when not incomprehensible, come off as mere games, his great ones are great games, matches between the absolutely necessary and the entirely arbitrary, played on the whole field of the English language, with grace, roughness, passion, late substitutions, astonishing transitions, and breathtaking saves. (Stephen Burt, TLS)
A great poet. (James Longenbach, Slate)
The range and ambition of Muldoon's poetry are as impressive as its idiosyncrasy. It encompasses epic, lyric, short story and intimately interlocked sequences such as the 19 sonnets forming the title sequence here. He has helped more than one generation think afresh about the dramatic possibilities of poetry and, perhaps most significantly, about the role of rhyme as an incitement to meaning. (Sean O'Brien, Sunday Times of London)
Muldoon's far-fetched, elaborate metaphors in many ways resemble Metaphysical conceits in their yoking together of imagery through a virtuoso display of his wit. Ben Jonson once declared that Donne, "for not keeping of an accent, deserved hanging": What kind of death, one wonders, would he have asked the executioner to devise for Muldoon's serial crimes against the conventions of poetry? (Mark Ford, The New York Review of Books )
Age has deepened Muldoon's poetry, and in Horse Latitudes he has been able, in his finely maintained tightrope act, to bear aloft both grief and playfulness. (Helen Vendler, The New Republic)
Brilliantly playful poems. (Adam Kirsch, The New York Sun)
The title sequence, which unifies emotion and language in a perfectly tuned harmony, may be the finest sonnet sequence published since Rainer Maria Rilke's "Orpheus" sonnets in 1922. (Jamie James, Los Angeles Times Book Review)
The breathtaking pleasures of Muldoon's enigmatic verses--his absolute control of pitch and tone, his slinky rhythms and winking jests--are only the alluring surfaces beneath which all sorts of deeper and darker matter slowly becomes apparent. (Robert Potts, The Telegraph)
Such poems don't just say things. We read them for what they do with and to language, how they engage and transform clich?s, how they subvert genres not in a mere spirit of play, but to make them serviceable in new ways. (Michael Schmidt, The Scotsman)
Muldoon is undisputedly a master poet. Many of his poems distinctly take up the poetic tradition yet skew it with half-rhymes and unlikely subjects for classical forms, and also engage deeply with the troubled politics of his native Northern Ireland yet intertwine them with Muldoon's own personal history, mythology and esoteric symbolism. If these poems are reluctant to offer themselves to easy interpretation, they nonetheless seduce the reader into repeated readings in which they only grow more interesting, a sure sign of their capacity to last. In his 11th collection, the Pulitzer Prize-winner and former professor of poetry at Oxford (his Oxford lectures are being released concurrently) is as good as ever. Amid the usual parade of poetic forms (a riddle, haiku and pantoum, among others), he treats post-9/11 America ("those weremy Twin Towers, right-"); aging, fatherhood and mortality ("a country toward which I've been rowing/ for fifty years"); the notion of "the old country" in a tour-de-force crown of sonnets ("Every escape was a narrow escape/ where every stroke was a broad stroke/ of an ax on a pig nape./ Every pig was a pig in a poke"); and the deaths of his sister and rocker Warren Zevon. With signature wit, Muldoon is preoccupied with the passage of time, the ways things change and stay the same, the distance between one culture and another, as well as the narrowing gap between high and popular culture. (Publishers Weekly)
Muldoon is a poet's poet, a master technician whose latest volume demonstrates an ease with sonnets, sestinas and satire. Drawing equally on both popular and classic culture for inspiration, the work in this collection reaffirms his range and brilliance, while making a forceful argument for poetry's continued urgency and relevance. (Favorite Fiction and Poetry of 2006, Los Angeles Times)
Muldoon has reinvented the possibilities of the relationship between poetic meaning and poetic form. There is little else to do but wonder and praise. (Deryn Rees-Jones, The Independent)
Brilliant. (Christina Patterson, Independent Books of the Year)
An exceptional collection. (Daily Telegraph Books of the Year)
One of the most exhilarating of all living poets. (Brian Phillips, New York Sun)
The final poem, "Sillyhow Stride"--written in memory of another kind of balladeer, Warren Zevon--is another of Muldoon's truly great, large-scaled, reeling elegies, freighted with grief for the world which goes beyond its ostensible subject. (Joyelle McSweeney, Rain Taxi)
Horse Latitudes is the Autumn 2006 Choice of the Poetry Book Society.
Some poets set the bar for a generation; others either attempt to reset it, or content themselves with merely attempting to meet it. Still others try to forget all about such things, drinking at an altogether different kind of bar. Paul Muldoon could be forgiven for forgetting just how often he has set the bar, and should be congratulated for evading the role of a poet's poet, instead giving pleasure to his many readers, well beyond such markers. (Selectors' Comment)
Paul Muldoon's Oxford Lectures in Poetry was published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux and Faber and Faber in October 2006.
Masterful. (Sally Vickers, Observer Books of the Year 2007)
A high-wire performance which generates great fun and insight... Any poet who can publish three volumes such as these (The End of the Poem, General Admission, Horse Latitudes) within a few months witnesses to a triumph of the creative imagination over all theories. The lectures are glorious, the songs are great fun, many of the individual poems are among the finest Muldoon has written. One is left eagerly awaiting to see what this great poet will do next. (William Bedford, Poetry Salzburg Review)
He is throughout subtle, sly, seductive and instructive. And because his mind, like Auden's, is a supreme echo chamber of all that has been done in poetry, The End of the Poem is a great, amplifying book. (Barry Hill, The Australian)
A rip-roaring work of inspired poetic scholarship and a stimulating, provocative, and unfailingly interesting read. (Maria Johnston, Contemporary Poetry Review)
His essays strike the difficult balance between due complexity and readability. Even people who normally give literary criticism a wide berth could find a good deal of stimulus and pleasure in The End of the Poem. Let's hope some of them give it a try. (Sean O'Brien, Poetry Review)
Muldoon dramatizes his experience of reading in such a way that he revives, admittedly speculatively and by means of his own circuits of association, the process by which the poem came into being. (Langdon Hammer, New York Times Book Review)
Unlike many of his predecessors, Muldoon chooses not to generalize about poetry. Instead, he explicates individual poems, one per lecture. The procedure demands close attention, but the results are revelatory. Reading here is a collaborative recreation and, at their best, Muldoon's interpretations--sometimes whimsically tenuous, often breathtaking in their intellectual boldness--are like improvised, free associating poems. (Peter Conrad, Observer)
Clear and deftly ironic, Muldoon's prose is a delight to read. (Rebecca Porte, Star Tribune)
Gain a whole season of highbrow cred in one fell swoop by picking up Irish Pulitzer Prize winner Paul Muldoon's simultaneously released new collection of poetry, Horse Latitudes, and collection of essays, The End of the Poem. Reading either one you will look like the smartest person in the subway car. (New York Magazine)
One of the most impressive books of practical criticism and poetic intelligence I have read in years. It is entertaining, informative, brilliant, distinctive, yet accessible for the common reader. (Maureen N. McLane, Chicago Tribune)
Muldoon entertains almost as much as he enlightens, an unusual and refreshing approach. (The Economist)
Necessary and irresistible. Muldoon's poems are of a piece with his prose, and when we follow him as he explores the writing of others we find new ways of reading his original work. (Michael Schmidt, Sunday Herald Books of the Year)
His lectures, delivered with an intimate command of literary history and of individual texts, are nothing if not fascinating. (Sam Munson, The New York Sun)
One of the most thrilling books of 'literary criticism' published in the last fifty years. (Adam Phillips, London Review of Books)

The Official Paul Muldoon Web Site. Copyright © 2012 by Paul Muldoon. Front page photo by Oliver Morris. Biography page photo by Pieter M. van Hattem.