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Peter Daniels

My Tin Watermelon

My Tin Watermelon


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In this collection, Peter Daniels looks at his life as an older gay man, his London neighbourhood, his furniture, other people’s gardens and London’s creatures. His distinctive voice ranges through tight rhyming to looser meditations and prose poems, always skilfully crafted as words to make some sense of the world.

Praise for this Book

‘A compelling hidden history of things. A matryoshka of meaning. A curated exhibition of memorabilia, tidbits and outfits, flora and fauna, places and spaces that make up a home, an identity, a life. It has the intimacy of a private view: visceral, humorous, philosophical, perceptive. We’re seduced by the things but more importantly, the poet’s flair for conjuring up absent things. A treat to read.’ —Patience Agbabi

‘Peter Daniels is engaged in a kind of poetic archaeology, unearthing what has been hidden and celebrating its considerable beauty. Here are poems replete with mirrored ballrooms, silk longjohns, rhubarb pavlovas, door bells, lemon yellow emulsion and ‘two men in bed unusually early’. My Tin Watermelon fizzes with queerness and rages against invisibility!’ —Richard Scott

Praise for Previous Work

‘Peter Daniels writes poetry that fizzes with wit, bold ideas and unexpected turns. A Season in Eden shows the full, dazzling range of his skills, each piece creating its own brilliantly imagined universe. He is equally at home in the surreal and the political, in the labyrinths of memory and on the streets of twenty-first century London. These lively poems compel attention, swerving and diving and delighting.’ —John McCullough

‘The poems in Peter Daniels’s new collection are personable and urbane, like old friends who have dropped in to share the latest news, but also sensuous and spiritual. They wear their formal flourishes lightly, but get to the very soul of things, so that when you reach the final line, you know you have been on a journey, and even if that journey is simply to Dalston Junction or to the shops, something has been transformed in the process.’ —Tamar Yoseloff

‘His strengths lie in his wit and an imagination that opens up new worlds, in pacing that sometimes works so well that the rhythms he achieves are like rivers in full spate.’ —Alyson Hallett, Poetry Salzburg

‘Just to say again that Peter is an outstanding, outrageous, and wildly funny reader. Dear organisers, BOOK HIM! Your audiences will thank you.’ —Alison Brackenbury

Counting Eggs is as diverse as it is consistent, drawing the reader back again and again, resisting the reviewer’s glib summation, but conjuring Robert Frost’s remarks about beginning in delight and ending in wisdom.’ —Times Literary Supplement

‘I like the way your poetry makes its aim to formulate the human uniqueness in its own terms — uniqueness of disposition, of sexuality, of whatever. An anti-generalizing poetry, perhaps. (Someone wrote a book called Homosexualities. I like the assertion that each case is different.)’ —Thom Gunn

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