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‘Spark in the Dark’ with John Constable

John Constable reads from his hallucinatory, Blakesque poetry collection, which draws much inspiration from London settings.


‘Spark in the Dark’
with John Constable

Wednesday 20th August,7pm
Entry £3, redeemable against any purchase

Housmans are delighted to welcome Londonphile John Constable, to read from his first collection of poetry. Best known for his 'Southwark Mysteries', his style has been described in 'Time Out' as 'like Shakespeare on acid'. The poems in this book encompass political satires and magical realist lyrics. In the line of Blake, they reveal the eternal, spiritual forms of our transitory, material world, celebrating the dynamic interplay of Contraries to challenge rigid belief-systems.

This transforming vision in action, as exemplified in ‘The Southwark Mysteries’ and in the later ‘Cross Bones’ poems, illuminates Constable's work as the urban shaman John Crow. In ‘Winchester Cathedral: Time Out Of Mind’, different ages, perspectives and literary styles collide to evoke a complex, and deeply conflicted, sense of place.

The other prose poem, ‘Wennefer’, is an hallucinatory, visceral, cautionary tale, retelling the Isis and Osiris myth in contemporary south London club culture.

'Past and present, sacred and profane jostle and collide in a glorious tumult... couched in verse that is muscular, ribald, and often dazzlingly rich...' The Times

'Blakean verse that resonates with modern life...' Freedom

'Like Shakespeare on acid...' Time Out

This event is part of Housmans' 'London's Burning' season, which explores the capital's radical past, present and future.

About the author:

John Constable is a poet, playwright, performer and purveyor of unusual walks. ‘The Southwark Mysteries’, his cycle of poems and contemporary Mystery Plays, was performed in Shakespeare's Globe and Southwark Cathedral.

His stage adaptation of ‘Gormenghast’, his ‘Sha-Manic Plays’, ‘The Southwark Mysteries’ and ‘Secret Bankside –Walks In The Outlaw Borough’ are all published by Oberon Books. His Radio 4 dramatisations of ‘The Kraken Wakes’ and ‘Chocky’ were released as BBC Audiobooks. His solo work includes ‘I Was An Alien Sex God’ and ‘SPARE’.

In his John Crow persona, he has conducted ritual dramas and vigils at Cross Bones cemetery in Southwark, where he has established a shrine and a garden of remembrance to 'honour the outcast'.


John Constable | talks | www


Date and Time:

20 August 2014 at 7:00 pm


1 hour 30 minutes



Housmans Bookshop
5 Caledonian Road
King’s Cross
N1 9DX
020 7837 4473

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Entry £3, redeemable against any purchase

Available from:

Additional Information:

We're very easy to find - just a two minute walk from King's Cross/St.Pancras terminals. Housmans is at the bottom end of Caledonian Road where it meets with Pentonville Road. If you have any problems finding us, give us a call!

020 7837 4473

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