Poem of the Week: ‘Snowdrop’ by Zaffar Kunial

25 March 2024

Our Poem of the Week is ‘Snowdrop’ from England’s Green, Zaffar Kunial’s distinctive and original second collection.

Zaffar Kunial is a proven master of taking things apart, polishing the fugitive parts of single words, of a sound, a colour, the name of a flower, and putting them back together so that we see them in an entirely different light. In the poems of England’s Green, we are invited to look at the place and the language we think we know, and we are made to think again.


The dead remember. Who said that?
I said that, said the dead. There is an
usness to everything. Every inanimate
who doesn’t remember. You are merely
the muffled voice pushing. A berried yew
must crown me. Do not let the tide wash
the inner keep. This island is not dead.
What’s the point of a dead bell? I am.


Copyright © Zaffar Kunial, 2022. Used by permission of Faber & Faber Ltd. All rights reserved.

‘Snowdrop’ by Zaffar Kunial is from England’s Green.

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Zaffar Kunial

A second collection from one of the most distinctive and original voices to have emerged in recent years, Zaffar Kunial.

About the Author

Zaffar Kunial lives in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire, and was born in Birmingham. His debut collection, Us, was shortlisted for a number of prizes, including the T. S. Eliot Prize. England’s Green, his latest collection, has been shortlisted for the T. S. Eliot Prize, the Rathbones Folio Prize and the Ondaatje Prize.

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About the Author
Zaffar Kunial