book cover of Pharmakon


A collection of poems by

PHARMAKON is a new collection of poems from the critically acclaimed author, Derek Beaven, whose novels include IF THE INVADER COMES, ACTS OF MUTINY & NEWTON'S NIECE.
'This collection contains forty-three poems in various formats. Some are substantial or consist of narrative sequences. Others are brief and poignant. There are also many touches of humour. The title PHARMAKON suggests the need for a cure - it's the original Greek word for a remedy (as in pharmacy, pharmaceutical, of course), and the title poem plays with the idea that poetry is often supposed to be "good for us". The poems all spring from a period some years ago when I was unwell and in need of a remedy, but they have nothing to do with drugs or medication - because I didn't take any. They represent, instead, a journey through a poetic landscape where the prospect of healing hangs just out of reach--almost like the grail, perhaps. On the way, we meet a variety of figures: the lady projectionist, the modern-day knight encased in the "wrap-round" steel of his car, the cyclist caught by an ambiguous angel, the tragic dog boy, the patient who invents an alternative body in order to breathe... These are poems that experiment with the possibilities both of subject matter and of form. If some appear dark, they offer, in the end, a message of hope.'
About the Author
Derek Beaven lives in Berkshire, England. He is the author of five novels. His first, NEWTON'S NIECE (1994) was shortlisted for the Writers' Guild Best Novel Prize and won a Commonwealth Prize. His second, ACTS OF MUTINY (1998) was shortlisted for the Guardian Fiction Prize. His third, IF THE INVADER COMES (2001) was long-listed for the Booker Prize.

Used availability for Derek Beaven's Pharmakon

Paperback Editions

March 2015 : USA Paperback

Title: Pharmakon
Author(s): Derek Beaven
ISBN: 1-5088-4338-4 / 978-1-5088-4338-2 (USA edition)
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   

Kindle Editions

January 2015 : Canada, UK Kindle edition

Title: Pharmakon
Author(s): Derek Beaven
Publisher: Derek Beaven
Availability: Amazon UK   Amazon CA