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Building Jerusalem

A Book Cover

Kevin J. Gardner, Professor of English

Nostalgia and love of parish churches is deeply embedded in the British psyche. Following the success of Poems in the Porch, a collection of hitherto unpublished poems on parish churches by Sir John Betjeman, Kevin Gardner has now assembled a new anthology of poems on the same theme yet with a greater diversity of post-war authors – Philip Larkin, R. S. Thomas, John Betjeman, C. Day Lewis, U. A. Fanthorpe and many others. The collection is introduced by a fascinating critical introduction, 'Anglican Memory and Post-war British Poetry' and will appeal to church and poetry lovers alike in their droves.


“A church without a poem is a steeple without a bell, a choir without a hymn. Thank you Kevin Gardner for composing such a glorious sound, and from friends old and new. It will enhance every church visitor's bliss.” 
– Sir Simon Jenkins

“A plangent, devastating elegy for a Church of England apparently in its death throes … One reads it with mingled admiration of the verse and sadness at the dereliction of so many English parish churches.” 
– Bevis Hillier

“An anthology that gave me even more pleasure than I expected” 
– Christopher Howse, Daily Telegraph

Bloomsbury, 2016  ISBN 9781472924353