Gregory Woods - author

­Welcome to my website. I use it to post information about my poetry and literary criticism, and also about my career as an academic and teacher. When I retired in 2013 I was appointed Professor Emeritus in Gay and Lesbian Studies by Nottingham Trent University.

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"The poet with the sharpest technique for social verse in Britain today. He lets off fireworks through the official groves of English literature" - Peter Porter

"The poems of Gregory Woods have never failed to impress me ... For a start there are few poets around who can rival him technically" - Matt Simpson

"When I think of the dross that is regularly published, noticed, praised, rewarded, and then consider that for the most part Woods goes without recognition, I'm not so much aghast as enraged at the (still largely London) cabal that decides poetic worth in England" - John Lucas

"I'm not sure I had ever written a fan letter before to a poet I had not met, but that's what I did when I read two poems by Gregory Woods ... I admired them especially for their technical virtuosity, in that it was technique completely used, never for the sake of cleverness but as a component of feeling ... What an enviable talent Gregory Woods has" - Thom Gunn

"I have read Gregory Woods' poems with real excitement" - Sir Stephen Spender

"Probably, the finest gay poet in the United Kingdom ... a poet of considerable technical ability and intellectual depth" - Sinéad Morrissey

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If you want to buy any of my books, please go to the Poetry and Non-fiction pages. Details of my publishers can be found on the Links page.


The youth who's posing for
the figure of himself
regrets the work of art.
He senses a betrayal
in its fidelity.
The more it looks like him
the more he feels he has
to prove himself its better.

The sculptor, referee
and chaperone, gives up.
He turns his back on them,
no longer capable
of telling them apart
or keeping them apart.

From Gregory Woods, Very Soon I Shall Know (Nottingham: Shoestring Press, 2012).


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In a hugely ambitious study which crosses continents, languages, and almost a century, Gregory Woods identifies the ways in which homosexuality has helped shape Western culture...

Latest Reviews Homintern: "This wide-ranging history of gay culture spans the so-called “Wilde century”: the era that began in 1895, with the trial of Oscar Wilde, when homosexuality emerged as “a major cultural influence.” Wandering from Sergei Diaghilev’s coterie around the Ballets Russes to Natalie Barney’s interwar Paris salon and Jane and Paul Bowles’s compound in Tangier, in the fifties, Woods shapes his book as a challenge to a defining myth of the period: the idea that homosexuals, newly emboldened, were secretly plotting a takeover of the social order. Marshalling an impressive array of conspiracy theories (as early as 1869, Engels was telling Marx that the “paederasts” would shortly begin organizing), Woods allows his eclectic portraits of gay groups and individuals to provide the exculpatory evidence." The New Yorker
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