Ben Okri's first poetry collection in eight years goes to Head of Zeus

Ben Okri's first poetry collection in eight years goes to Head of Zeus

Head of Zeus will publish A Fire in My Head, Ben Okri's first new poetry collection in eight years.

Editor-at-large Maggie McKernan acquired world English rights to A Fire in My Head, alongside two of Okri's archived poetry collections, Mental Fight and Wild, from Georgina Capel at Georgina Capel Associates. All three collections will be published in January 2021. 

A Fire in My Head looks at current affairs such as the refugee crisis, racism, Barack Obama, the Grenfell Tower fire, and the coronavirus outbreak.

McKernan said: “Ben Okri’s Grenfell Tower poem has been viewed six million times on Facebook. His poetry bore solitary witness then, at a time when many felt without a voice. He is not afraid to speak about the injustice in the world, and he continues to use his poetic voice to do just that. The final poem in this new collection, A Fire in My Head is his response to the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis in May 2020. We’re very proud to publish this collection alongside two new editions of his poetry titles Mental Fight and Wild.”

Okri commented: “It is with delight that I share my new book of poems, A Fire in My Head, with the world. It’s my first book of poems in eight years and  constitutes my poetic response to our times."

Mental Fight was originally published by W&N in 1999 and Wild was first published by Rider in 2012. Okri has published 10 other titles with Head of Zeus, including a short story collection, Prayer for the Living, in 2019.