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Poems

When Golding was an undergraduate at Oxford University, he showed some of his poems to a friend. The friend was struck by the quality of Golding's work, and sent a selection of poems to Macmillan & Co., where he knew an editor. Poems by W.G. Golding was published in the autumn of 1934, when their author was just twenty-three.

In later years Golding felt regretful that they had been published, and is even recorded as having bought a second-hand copy of them so that he could tear the book up. (This was before he found out it was a collector's item of some considerable value.) However, the poems are accomplished and individual.

While they are not as forceful and compelling as the novels, these early poems are recognisably the works of a determined, independent and accomplished writer.


William Golding Limited has established a collaboration with the Centre for South West Writing based at the Streatham and Tremough campuses of the University of Exeter featuring original writing by graduate students. Read 'The Sea is Roaring in My Blood: The Poetry of William Golding' (PDF, 73 Kb) by Jacqueline Vigilanti, MA student, University of Exeter, Cornwall Campus


John Carey's new biography of William Golding

John Carey

Drawing almost entirely on materials that have never before been made public, John Carey, the distinguished writer and critic, sheds new light on Golding. Through hundreds of letters, unpublished works and Golding's intimate journals, Carey draws a revelatory and definitive portrait of an extraordinary man. In an absorbing and compelling narrative, he reveals a many-sided figure: a war-hero, a reclusive depressive who considered himself a 'monster', a family man, a victim of fears and phobias who battled against alcoholism, and a writer who trusted the imagination above all things.

Follow the link below to hear 'audio snippets' where Carey reads from his highly praised new biography.

William Golding: The Man Who Wrote Lord of the Flies