J. O. Morgan

J. O. Morgan (b. 1978, Edinburgh) is the son of a former R.A.F. officer, who was involved in maintaining Britain’s Airborne Nuclear Deterrent. Assurances is Morgan’s response to his father’s tremendous responsibility: it eavesdrops on the thoughts of those trying to understand and justify their roles in keeping peace by threatening war. Those overheard include civilians unaware of danger, enemy agents, the whirring machines and even the bomb itself.

Morgan, who lives on a farm in the Scottish Borders, is the author of five previous collections, each (like Assurances) a single book-length poem. Natural Mechanical won the Aldeburgh First Collection Prize, and was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best First Collection; Interference Pattern, the first of his collections to be published by Cape, was shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize.

Forward Prizes History:

  • 2018 Forward Prizes for Best Collection, shortlisted for Assurances (Cape Poetry)
  • 2009 Felix Dennis for Best First Collection, shortlisted for Natural Mechanical (CB Editions)